On the right track

Jan Raycroft reports on her visit to Kannegiesser’s Supertrack operation in Banbury

It would have been the easiest – and soon revealed as pointless – question to ask during a visit to Kannegiesser’s highly successful Supertrack operation in Banbury: ‘Can you tell us about the average Supertrack monorail?’ That would no doubt have seen Paul Morley, director of the division, raise an eyebrow, so we’re rather glad we didn’t. What quickly becomes apparent is that, while the ultimate aim is to install a laundry sorting system which ticks all the boxes for high throughput, meeting all the daily demands of a commercial laundry without costly downtime, and providing ergonomic gains, there is no such thing as the ‘average’ Supertrack.

“From the start we set out to fit the system around the business like a glove,” says Morley. Indeed, he and his fellow engineers, whether working on computer projections, the high-grade stainless steel track system or robust transit bags, are themselves a perfect fit for such projects. They clearly relish challenges, whether that’s dealing with legacy systems in laundries across the planet, multi-site operations or the likes of sorting floor or roof height limitations.

It’s a shared outlook which goes right through from concept and design to eventual installation. There’s no hard sell here, but then the combined ‘Yes we can’ approach probably seals the deal far more effectively. There’s a sort of military precision meets smooth oiled machine ethos here – perhaps not surprising when you consider Morley’s background.

There’s his impressive career in the industry starting with Initial Textile Services, then the UK division of Böwe Passat prior to joining Ducker UK where he became project manager. Morley studied for a PhD in artificial intelligence and mathematical modelling with the Open University and was appointed director of the Supertrack operation four and a half years ago. As for us civilians at Laundry & Cleaning Today, we marvelled at what was going on in the Banbury offices and then took a quick march downstairs to not only view the huge display of Supertrack spares stored alongside the Kannegiesser UK machinery parts, but to have a peek at a testing area where laundry bags were swiftly moving nonstop around a track in the ceiling area.

The configuration looked complicated to the untrained eye, but everything was running just as it should. Proposed solutions as well as some ‘hush-hush’ R&D was going on here as the Supertrack team worked on potential new concepts and ways to enhance their already revolutionary system.

Key to their mission is that in any soiled and clean laundry logistics system uninterrupted production is essential, alongside low maintenance needs during a long service life. This starts with the high-quality rail, made without a need for welding points. The system’s trolleys run on the outside of the rail (less lint accumulation and more convenient cleaning), while the trolley’s ball bearings never require manual re-oiling.

The bags have a host of features to ensure they are easy to change and reliable, while a new and redesigned Servolift system swiftly transports them up to the rail after loading. Continuous sorting can be achieved through honeycomb sorting positions, with operators receiving mixed soiled laundry before sorted batches are automatically delivered to transit bags for transfer to soiled storage lines. An eVue control system ensures they are delivered to the correct continuous batch washers or washer-extractors.

For all the impressive technology, it’s the people behind it who create the success story. A laundry owner might meet just some of Supertrack’s design and installation experts – but behind the scenes at Banbury are a team just as determined to produce spectacular results.

Supertrack director Paul Morley and his team share a ‘Yes we can’ approach

Some of Supertrack’s experts spend a lot of time using specialist modelling programmes to design the best systems for individual laundries

Jan Raycroft reports on her visit to Kannegiesser’s Supertrack operation in Banbury

It would have been the easiest – and soon revealed as pointless – question to ask during a visit to Kannegiesser’s highly successful Supertrack operation in Banbury: ‘Can you tell us about the average Supertrack monorail?’ That would no doubt have seen Paul Morley, director of the division, raise an eyebrow, so we’re rather glad we didn’t. What quickly becomes apparent is that, while the ultimate aim is to install a laundry sorting system which ticks all the boxes for high throughput, meeting all the daily demands of a commercial laundry without costly downtime, and providing ergonomic gains, there is no such thing as the ‘average’ Supertrack.

“From the start we set out to fit the system around the business like a glove,” says Morley. Indeed, he and his fellow engineers, whether working on computer projections, the high-grade stainless steel track system or robust transit bags, are themselves a perfect fit for such projects. They clearly relish challenges, whether that’s dealing with legacy systems in laundries across the planet, multi-site operations or the likes of sorting floor or roof height limitations.

It’s a shared outlook which goes right through from concept and design to eventual installation. There’s no hard sell here, but then the combined ‘Yes we can’ approach probably seals the deal far more effectively. There’s a sort of military precision meets smooth oiled machine ethos here – perhaps not surprising when you consider Morley’s background.

There’s his impressive career in the industry starting with Initial Textile Services, then the UK division of Böwe Passat prior to joining Ducker UK where he became project manager. Morley studied for a PhD in artificial intelligence and mathematical modelling with the Open University and was appointed director of the Supertrack operation four and a half years ago. As for us civilians at Laundry & Cleaning Today, we marvelled at what was going on in the Banbury offices and then took a quick march downstairs to not only view the huge display of Supertrack spares stored alongside the Kannegiesser UK machinery parts, but to have a peek at a testing area where laundry bags were swiftly moving nonstop around a track in the ceiling area.

The configuration looked complicated to the untrained eye, but everything was running just as it should. Proposed solutions as well as some ‘hush-hush’ R&D was going on here as the Supertrack team worked on potential new concepts and ways to enhance their already revolutionary system.

Key to their mission is that in any soiled and clean laundry logistics system uninterrupted production is essential, alongside low maintenance needs during a long service life. This starts with the high-quality rail, made without a need for welding points. The system’s trolleys run on the outside of the rail (less lint accumulation and more convenient cleaning), while the trolley’s ball bearings never require manual re-oiling.

The bags have a host of features to ensure they are easy to change and reliable, while a new and redesigned Servolift system swiftly transports them up to the rail after loading. Continuous sorting can be achieved through honeycomb sorting positions, with operators receiving mixed soiled laundry before sorted batches are automatically delivered to transit bags for transfer to soiled storage lines. An eVue control system ensures they are delivered to the correct continuous batch washers or washer-extractors.

For all the impressive technology, it’s the people behind it who create the success story. A laundry owner might meet just some of Supertrack’s design and installation experts – but behind the scenes at Banbury are a team just as determined to produce spectacular results.

Supertrack director Paul Morley and his team share a ‘Yes we can’ approach

Some of Supertrack’s experts spend a lot of time using specialist modelling programmes to design the best systems for individual laundries

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