Building and optimising laundry facilities specialising in workshop towels

In recent months WSP has embarked on an extensive project at a big laundry in Switzerland. Like others, this customer is drawing on WSP’s unique specialist knowledge related to laundries specialising in workshop towels.

The workshop towels in question are used mainly in graphic design and technical companies. On the one hand, this is a laundry process that requires special attention in view of the hazardous fumes that may be released while the towels are being stored and processed. On the other hand, specific handling is involved in processing the clean towels, such as:

  • The buffering and transporting of workshop towels throughout the process
  • Automatic metal detection
  • Separating towels for visual inspection
  • The automatic counting of the workshop towels
  • The automatic filling of bins, dispenser boxes and rolling containers to the correct volume/number
  • Integrated container cleaning.

For both the soiled and clean laundry sides, WSP has now provided multiple laundries with custom-made solutions. These solutions aim to automate and integrate as many of the above tasks as possible, thus making the processing of laundry simpler, safer and cheaper.

Over the past two months our specialists have installed a new bag rail system in which the towels are stored after being dried. From this bag rail system, the workshop towels are processed in four quality-control lines. At a later stage, another two lines can be added. At present WSP is assembling these lines and making them operational. Each line is capable of processing approx. 10,000 workshop towels an hour and can be operated by a single person. The inspection of these towels for remnants of metal as well as their discharge are performed automatically. Tests will soon be carried out involving vision techniques that will subject the towels to a visual inspection.

After the towels have been inspected, batches are made up. The number of towels per batch is tailored to meet the wishes of the end customer. The filling of various types of roll boxes and drums also relies entirely on WSP solutions and is fully automated. Solutions are also available for packing these towels automatically in plastic bags. Once the filling stage has been completed, the containers and drums are given a label carrying all the relevant data for the end customer and are then transported.

The unique feature of this system is that full integration is realised using the laundry’s current ERP system. This prevents any data being duplicated, there is a single source of master data and the ERP system can respond immediately to the data acquired from production. Another fine example of how the WSP solution can create a single integrated production chain.