Industrial gas company AGA has completely overhauled its gas cylinder filling plant in Finland to become the world’s first fully automated filling station for industrial gases.
AGA initially opened the filling plant in Riihimäki, southern Finland, in 1995. Under a €8.5m ($9.5m) investment, the company has completely renewed and modernised its operations, with the latest in robotic technology now responsible for all stages of filling and handling the cylinders.
The plant now produces over 200 gas mixtures and over 700,000 cylinders per year.
Its cornerstone feature is the automated carousel filling equipment. Its gentry robot is capable of storing 3,200 cylinders and remembers the exact client and destination for each vessel. Once filled, robots then send the products to automated guided vehicles for delivery.
The fully automated plant takes AGA’s emphasis on safety to a new level, with Pekka Vaahtera, Head of Cylinder Operations at AGA Finland highlighting, “We are proud to be able to continue to offer AGA’s customers service that is as effortless, safe and comprehensive as possible.”
“We have been a part of the Finnish daily life for a century now, and we aim to remain the best expert in gases for the next hundred years as well.”
Kaisa Nieminen, Head of Sales at AGA Finland, added, “The Riihimäki filling plant is the first implementation of our new, international concept, and it will be the model for other plants around the world.”
Over the past two years, AGA has invested approximately €140m ($157m) in several of its production units across Finland. AGA’s parent company The Linde Group also installed the first modular semi-automated filling plant in Malaysia recently – a first for Linde in the South Asia and ASEAN region. It can fill over two million cylinders a year.