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African Petrochemicals is South Africa’s leading quarterly print and digital trade magazine for the past 15 years. Featuring all the latest petrochemical industry news, special reports, technological advances and much more.


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SICK Automation upgrades luggage ID scanners at OR Tambo International Airport

SICK Automation recently upgraded luggage identification scanners at OR Tambo International Airport, the largest and busiest airport in Africa.

The upgrade included replacing SICK’s recently discontinued range of CLV 490 scanners with its next generation CLV 690 laser-based barcode scanners that offer improved read rates. The upgraded scanners ensure reliable and accurate luggage barcode scanning, no matter the luggage shape, height or orientation.

“The original scanners were installed between 2008 and 2010 and are still operating to spec,” comments Danie Labuschagne, Logistic Automation Manager, SICK Automation Southern Africa. “But as the range had been replaced with the newer models, spare parts availability was becoming more difficult. And with the fast pace and need for accuracy at any airport, let alone Africa’s busiest, having the newest technologies and ample spare parts drove the need for the upgrade.”

The new scanners are mounted onto aluminium frames along the airports’ luggage conveyor belts to scan and identify luggage in accordance with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) standard. The identification data captured is communicated to the airport’s higher-level control system.

SICK replaced a total of 310 barcode scanners at Terminals A, B and CTB at the airport. In order to minimise any disruption to the airport’s operations during the upgrade, SICK installed the scanners in one-day phases throughout the various terminals.

“Most of the world’s airports use SICK scanners for luggage identification,” adds Labuschagne. “This market-share enables us to deliver an effective, highly technical solution that we know operates reliably and efficiently at the world’s busiest airports.”

SICK Automation Southern Africa was contracted by system integrators Krier Technologies on behalf of Aviation Co-ordination Services (ACS). The OR Tambo International Airport upgrade was completed in March 2017.

About SICK Automation

SICK is one of the world’s leading producers of sensors and sensor solutions for industrial applications. Founded in 1946 by Dr.-Ing. e. h. Erwin Sick, the company with headquarters in Waldkirch im Breisgau near Freiburg ranks among the technological market leaders. With more than 50 subsidiaries and equity investments as well as numerous agencies, SICK maintains a presence around the globe. In the fiscal year 2015, SICK had more than 7400 employees worldwide and achieved Group sales of just under EUR 1.3 billion. Additional information about SICK is available on the Internet at or by phone on +27 11 472 3733. 


Danie Labuschagne

Logistic Automation Manager

SICK Automation Southern Africa

Tel: +27 11 472 3733




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