Ongoing investment in new production technology and practices at Parker SSD Drives' European headquarters in Littlehampton is enabling the company to improve its product quality and delivery times. Parker SSD Drives is a division of Parker Hannifin, and the new investment is allowing the company to integrate its UK operation more effectively with other Parker production centres around the world.
The latest investment has been in two advanced surface-mount lines for the high-speed production of control cards and power boards used in Parker SSD Drives' range of AC, DC and servo products. Roy Stout, Littlehampton Plant Manager, explains that the surface-mount lines have "been designed to maximise throughput while producing the highest levels of quality, as part of our ISO 9001:2000 quality control procedures. The lines use the latest screen print, component feeding, wave soldering and pick-and-place technologies, and are controlled from a centralised computer system that enables us to set up and manage each production batch extremely efficiently. As a result, we have been able to improve overall uptime in this department by around 70 per cent and, perhaps as importantly, to minimise setup times, with greater production flexibility and less wastage."
With this investment in the surface-mount lines, Parker SSD Drives has been able to shorten its product delivery times. As Roy Stout points out: "It is our customers who will really benefit from this new investment, as it is already enabling us to deliver 99.8 per cent of all customer orders on or before the customer request date. This is a terrific achievement and a reflection on the dedication and skills of our production staff."
Parker SSD Drives has invested further to make its manufacturing processes compliant with the RoHS directive, which is designed to restrict the use of hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment and has involved changes in components and raw materials. Roy Stout highlights: "This is crucial if we are to maintain our position as the leading global manufacturer of high technology products and the company that sets best practice standards. In addition, by becoming RoHS-compliant, we can provide our customers with the assurance that our drives meet all of the required technical and commercial legislation, today and in the future."