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Case study: Sortco GmbH & Co. KG

Automation of a modern sorting plant for granular raw materials


The controls of the various systems integrate seamlessly, resulting in efficient and smoother operation.

The outdoor silos can communicate seamlessly with the various sorting systems through integration, thus ensuring effective material processing.

The use of a monitored coupling station ensures that no material can be mixed up.

  • "The provision of customized sorting solutions with the highest degree of purity and quality also requires the highest precision in all processes and workflows. BSG's integrated control and automation solutions play a decisive role here and guarantee process reliability and flexibility."

    Lars Ruttmann, Managing Partner

Why Sortco came to BSG

In March 2021, Sortco put a new production building into operation to meet the increasing demand from customers. A comprehensive automation concept for the new sorting lines and extensive material handling was developed in collaboration with BSG.

A wide variety of sorting systems with conveyor technology

There are currently five different sorting plants with corresponding conveying routes for the material to be sorted to the sorting plant and for further processing and filling.

Contamination risk due to material flows

The complex material flows through several different processing stations always harbor the risk of contamination due to material mixing. Automated processes are a key success factor here.

Flexibility and expandability

Ongoing improvements and new tasks require easy expansion and optimization of existing control systems. For example, newly constructed outdoor silos were subsequently integrated into the existing automation system using a higher-level control system.

BSG and Sortco have made this possible

Automation of the sorting lines incl. conveyor technology

In 2021, the first three sorting lines were automated and put into operation. A further two lines followed in 2022. The associated conveyor technology (feeding stations, suction conveyors, storage containers, etc.) was also automated for all five lines. New control cabinets and operating panels with the ONEoperate operating system were supplied for this automation.

Integration of newly constructed outdoor silos plus monitored coupling station

In summer 2023, the new outdoor silos were then integrated into the existing control system. A higher-level control system was supplied and installed for this purpose. This integration allows the outdoor silos to communicate seamlessly with the various sorting systems, ensuring effective material processing.

In addition, the use of a monitored coupling station ensures that no material mix-ups occur and that the sorting systems are operated with the correct material.

ONEoperate as a control system

ONEoperate is an innovative solution that combines automation and user interface in a single concept. By concentrating on a central operating unit for the entire system, the handling of the system is greatly simplified.

A major advantage for the operator is that they can always use the same operating concept regardless of the different system setups. This allows the systems to be controlled and optimized more efficiently. 

Außerdem kann der Bediener direkt am zentralen Punkt auf bestimmte Ereignisse reagieren. Dies führt zu einer erhöhten Austauschbarkeit und Flexibilität der Mitarbeiter und ermöglicht dem Betreiber diese an verschiedenen Anlagen einzusetzen.

In summary ...

The new plant with its five automated lines represents a significant step forward for Sortco. It enables efficient and contamination-free processing of various types of raw materials and contributes to increasing production capacity. The company is proud to be able to offer its customers even better services.

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