Atkin Automation goes to the Czech Republic with American multi-national

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Thetford, Norfolk: As part of a major investment programme to support its position as the preferred choice of major retailers in the UK and Europe, an American multi-national organisation has placed a further contract, worth £850,000, with Atkin Automation.   

This contract is for a turnkey package consisting of two automated production lines for the manufacture of shelving for use in European supermarkets. It will be entirely UK designed and manufactured in Thetford, Norfolk, but it is destined for a new factory in the Eastern Czech Republic belonging to one of the customer’s  subsidiary companies.

Atkin Automation equipment used to provide the key functionality of the shelf line will include a 10,000 kg decoiler, a motorised straightener with photobeam loop control and a servo roll feed. Notching units, hydraulic shears and end benders, a conveyor system and stack and de-stack units will be incorporated into this sophisticated production line to ensure an output of 10 shelves per minute.

Shelves need stiffening to ensure strength and rigidity, and the second automated production line will be used to manufacture ‘stiffeners’. The combination of an Atkin Automation coilholder (2,500kg), motorised straightener, servo roll feed, crop unit and rollformer will ensure that this line produces 30 components per minute. These components are then welded to the underside of the shelves.

Atkin Automation Managing Director, Chris Ward, is very pleased with the way in which the company’s relationship has developed with this customer, saying: 

“These automated production lines are highly sophisticated pieces of equipment, but the synergy between the two companies has enabled us to overcome a number of complex engineering issues. We shall shortly complete 
this customer’s second back panel line, and work will begin without delay on this latest contract to ensure that these two new lines are ready for delivery by November 2007.”  

Atkin Automation’s international reputation has been built over many years around its manufacture of the Atkin and BHP range of specialist, high performance coil handling and processing products and equipment. It also holds European distribution rights to the Shung Dar range of Taiwanese coil handling and processing equipment, which sits comfortably alongside the company’s traditional products.

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