MuCRoute - Monitoring and Controlling of in-plant tugger train systems

Starting at the automotive industry, tugger train systems are increasingly used in many other companies of all sizes. While the planning of tugger train systems has already undergone in-depth consideration, the monitoring and controlling during operation is the subject to open questions.
Due to the multitude of potential influencing factors and their interactions, the complexity of a tugger train system is high, not only in planning but also during operation. Although operating a tugger train system can generate a comprehensive data basis for the assessment of the system status from transport control systems and warehouse management, there currently is a lack of a standardised and tugger train-specific compression of this data to meaningful key figures.
Lacking clarity of the data and knowledge in dealing with tugger train systems, it is often difficult for inexperienced users to react propperly to negative influences and other events in the tugger train system. Accordingly, it is not possible to return to a stable and efficient system status in a timely manner

With the implementation of the project, a tool is created for operators of a tugger train system, which comprehensively simplifies the problem of handling incidents. For this purpose, a software will be developed which collects and compresses available user-relevant key figures of a tugger train system. The software is developed as an add-on for existing SAP systems. In addition, a knowledge management system recognizes known errors and suggests corrective measures itself. Patterns of unknown system faults are also detected and recorded in the knowledge database as part of a self-learning system.
The tool is based on a comprehensive examination of various key figures, which are examined with regard to their content and mathematical relationships. Furthermore, additional, new key figures are defined in order to present the status of any route train system in a fully comprehensive way and at the same time as compact as possible. In the application, the user is able to filter and examine individually required information

Starting with a comprehensive analysis of the components and influencing variables of a tugger train system, a catalogue of requirements is  developed, which describes the scope and characteristics of the required key figure system. Based on these requirements, existing key figures are checked for their suitability, combined with each other or supplemented by newly developed key figures. Then a comparison is taken, how far the required key figures can be obtained with typically available data from an average tugger train system. At this point, information or sensor-technical additions might to be made if necessary. Based on a fixed key figure system, a knowledge management system is designed which recognizes changes in a tugger train system and compares them with known errors in order to suggest possible solutions. New error structures are recognized and stored with feedback loops with suggested solutions. The implementation of the tool takes place with regard to a coupling to the ERP system SAP by means of object-oriented programming. The results are validated using historical data templates and tests in operative route train systems.

  • Flexus AG

The research project is funded by the Bavarian State Ministry of Economic Affairs, Regional Development and Energy under the funding code IUK571/002.