Oerlikon Opens $7-Million U.S. Manufacturing And Laboratory Plant For Welding Consumables

welding laboratory

Dignitaries from the international and national welding and business communities recently gathered in Houston, Texas, for the commissioning ceremony of Oerlikon Welding Industries's new $7-million welding consumables manufacturing facility.

Oerlikon Welding Industries (OWI), an Oerlikon-Buehrle Group Company, will serve as the North American headquarters for the welding division of Oerlikon-Buehrle, multibillion- dollar Swiss parent company with diversified product groups throughout the world.

OWI's new 58,000-square-foot manufacturing facility is one of the first new flux manufacturing plants to be built in the U.S. in over 20 years. It utilizes a unique high-temperature flux drying kiln designed exclusively by Oerlikon. In addition to submerged arc flux, OWI will also manufacture a complete selection of covered electrodes.

James T. Hickey, vice president and general manager, introduced guest speakers M. D. Randall, 1983-84 president of the American Welding Society, and Dr. Herbert Menzi, head of welding industries Oerlikon- Buehrle Ltd. in Zurich, Switzerland. In his speech, Dr. Menzi cited Oerlikon-Buehrle commitment to the American market and pledged full support to OWI's product development. He then flicked a switch and Oerlikon's manufacturing facility roared into production.

Following the opening ceremony, guests were taken on tours of Oerlikon's plant and laboratory facilities to become acquainted with the many technical aspects and manufacturing processes associated with the production of submerged arch fluxes and covered electrodes.

According to Mr. Hickey, OWI has outfitted one of the most impressive welding laboratories in the Southwest. Analytical equipment includes an ARL inductively coupled plasma spectrometer for analysis of aciddissolved alloy samples; a DIANO XRD-8565 X-ray fluorescence analyzer for both metallic and non-metallic material analysis; a LECO PTF 700 induction melting furnace; and LECO EC 12 carbon analyzer for infrared analysis of carbon levels down to parts per million. The Oerlikon laboratory represents a $1- million investment to ensure quality consumables and services. In addition to monitoring its manufacturing procedures, Oerlikon plans to contract technical services to welding fabrication industries, research organizations, metallurgical industries, and steel-making foundries.

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