February 24--Using nitrogen gas bottles, a sheet metal fabricator had to shut down a laser cutting machine for 30 min/day to change over; now supply is continuous by using an on-site N2 generator instead.
Leicester, U.K.-based metal fabricator, Metalfacture, proved that an on-going inward investment policy leads to quantifiable success. The company's investment policy includes new technology and staff training. It purchased an on-site nitrogen generator from domnick hunter four years ago to boost its laser cutting facility and has not looked back since.
High-pressure nitrogen acts as an assist gas; its inert properties help to prevent exothermic reactions and ensure materials are cut by laser power alone, which minimizes defects and improves cut finish.
As demand pushed production up to 24 hours/day, Metalfacture was using a multiple-cylinder-pack (MCP) of nitrogen nearly every other day.
Changing cylinders meant the laser cutting machine was shut down for at least 30 minutes, which over the year added up to almost two weeks in lost production.
Escalating delivery costs, valuable time taken up of experienced staff, and lost production all forced the company to source a method of generating nitrogen on site.
The domnick hunter Maxigas generator operates on the pressure swing adsorption principle to produce a continuous stream of nitrogen gas from compressed air.
James Cooper, managing director of Metalfacture, says, "The Maxigas installation provides an on-demand nitrogen supply that does not interrupt production." He adds, "Not having to rely on an outside supplier boosts cash flow and productivity." By maintaining its state-of-the-art facilities, Metalfacture hopes to remain competitive and add value for its customers in terms of quality and turnaround times.
For more information on Metalfacture, visit www.metalfacture.com.