The HARTING Technology Group inaugurated its new European Distribution Centre (EDC) in Espelkamp, Germany — a flagship project that represents the largest single investment in the company’s history (€45 million) and showcases its technological and logistical expertise.

The EDC, which is already being referred to as a “cathedral of logistics” due to the attractive architectural stylings of the functional building, will support faster shipping and new market growth by accommodating approximately 7,000 pallets and 120,000 containers, processing up to 20,000 order items and shipping roughly 10,000 packages a day, and transporting up to 2,000 containers in and out of the warehouse every hour.

Technical highlights include a highly automated picking system, an optimized storage area, RFID technology that ensures that pallets are correctly placed and loaded, a driverless transport system that hauls goods between the halls and independently selects the optimum route, a rooftop photovoltaic system for energy generation and a geothermal plant for heating and cooling, ergonomic workstations that lift pallets almost a meter in height for picking to prevent employees from repeated bending, and highly flexible logistics that allow for fast responses to changing economic or political framework conditions, such as trade barriers. The EDC also features offices, social spaces, a reception area, and a bistro with terrace seating.