DHL opens two terminals at Leipzig and debuts automated pallet handling system

DHL Express has opened two new terminals at its fast growing Leipzig hub, with one of the operations featuring the world’s first automated pallet handling system.
The new Terminal Two and Terminal Three were built at a cost of €230m, more than doubling the surface area of the hub’s sorting centre to 87,000 sq m.
Shipment processing times at the terminal have increased by 50% to 150,000 items per hour.
Terminal Two is the larger of the two new terminals. At the moment, Terminal Three is being used for larger shipments as work continues on its sorting system. This should be fully operational by the end of 2017.
Deutsche Post DHL Group chief executive Frank Appel told a press conference the success of the hub was down to its Central European location and good road and rail links from the airport.
He said that 50% of the company’s European flights and 16% of global flights are handled at Leipzig, which handles approximately 65 aircraft per day.
"The successful launch of our expanded hub and new sorting facility is a further step that reinforces the importance of Leipzig as our main European hub," he said.
DHL Express Germany chairman of the divisional board Wolfgang Albeck added that when the hub first opened in 2008 no one would have believed that that there would be need for expansion within ten years.
He said that while the terminal would increase capacity, it would also speed up processing times, which was important to express customers.
The express firm also revealed its world first automated pallet handling system, which will be based in Terminal Two. The machine can handle shipments of up to 170kg.
Pallets are unloaded from ULDs onto the device on the ground floor before they are taken up 12 m on a lift system and then automatically transferred to the correct point for reloading into a ULD heading for the final destination.

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