Optimum customer satisfaction can only be achieved with optimally trained employees: This is the basic idea behind the NordPro initiative, which has operated a laboratory with the same name since 2011. Here, employees receive training in the fundamentals of lean management and are given ideas for implementing these ideas in their daily work. The programme is organised and managed by Nord trainees who use this opportunity to extend their organisational and representational skills. This “hands-on” experience is also an important part of the comprehensive Nord training programme.
NordPro was founded in 2008 to sustainably ensure customer satisfaction in an age of increased expectations. The idea: To actively communicate lean management methods to employees in order to give them tools with which company processes can be optimised for the benefit of customers. The programme first started with the five tools Kaizen, Fluss; Smed; TPM and Q-Groups, but since then has been continuously developed to include new methods.
In 2011, the initiators went a step further with the NordPro Lab. Specially equipped areas were created at the Bargteheide site, where various modularly structured training courses with a heavy practical emphasis are now held. Here, the theoretical knowledge of lean management which has been acquired is utilised and deepened using simulation games. By dealing with hypothetical problems, participants learn the effects of process improvements, in addition to which cross-departmental understanding of work processes is promoted. The NordPro tools can be used for assembly, logistic and production processes, as well as at an administrative level, so that the training is used equally by all Nord employees across the various sites.
A further special feature of the NordPro Lab is that it is now organised and led by Nord trainees and dual-training students who take on the organisation and implementation of the courses. However, their remit is also to continuously develop the laboratory and the content of the courses. This requires organisational expertise as well as a confident manner and specialist theoretical knowledge, which will be a great advantage in their further careers.
Independent management of the NordPro Lab is a part of Nord’s sophisticated training strategy. Within the Nord Group, young talent can receive business, industrial or technical training or even carry out a dual course of study at several locations. Nord provides training in the professions of industrial management, technical product design, mechatronics, IT system integration, industrial mechanics and cutting machine operation. Dual bachelor study courses are offered in industrial engineering, IT for business, applied IT, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and mechatronics.
Versatile chemical metering pumps
New flexible safety system
Smooth upgrading of process plants
Hima Paul Hildebrandt, provider of smart safety solutions for industrial applications, has brought a new programmable safety system onto the market. The flexible and scalable Hi-Quad X is a further development of the Hi-Quad, which has been securing over ten thousand applications worldwide for around 30 years. It fits seamlessly into Hima’s Smart Safety Platform.
The Hi-Quad X is not just a flexible, efficient safety system; it is also an important component in Hima’s new, technically coherent Smart Safety Platform, which unifies all safety systems of the company. Hardware and software are closely aligned. Plant operators thus receive a scalable solution which they can use to cover the complete safety and security requirements for small single applications right through to complex architectures of large-scale plants in line with requirements.
The Smart Safety Platform is based on the use of basic components which are identical for all Hima product families, including operating system, engineering tool and communication via Safe Ethernet. The fact that platform components can be combined freely means that virtually every customer solution can be developed and implemented. The holistic approach enables companies to use a solution from one source, thereby reducing the complexity of their plants considerably.
New performance dimensions, flexible system architecture and integrated intrinsic safety
With the implementation of the proven platform technology, the Hi-Quad X reaches a new performance dimension. Users thus benefit from a reduced system cycle and reaction time, particularly for floating point calculations. The increased diagnostic capability, which permits quicker defect tracking during maintenance work, provides additional benefits. On the one hand the more flexible system architecture enables the timely use of redundant modules right through to complete redundancy. On the other hand retrospective adaptations to the system for application programs, hardware and communication can be undertaken – even during operation.
The Hi-Quad X system also enables the use of SIL3 modules with integrated intrinsic safety (Ex protection). Users no longer need a separate isolation amplifier for their intrinsically safe SIL circuits. The benefits of the diagnostics provided can therefore be utilized up to the field device without any losses. Other benefits include the simplification of planning, documentation and furnishing proof of the intrinsic safety. The fact that flawed plant outages due to defective isolation amplifiers are no longer an issue is another huge bonus. This is made possible by the redundant connection options which always permit the exchange of defective system components during operation.
The Hi-Quad X system can of course be connected with every basic process control system (BPCS), even on a redundant pathway. It then continues to run independently even if an error occurs in the BPCS or in the communication. The security mechanisms which are installed assist with this process. They create a virtual and also a physical separation when standard protocols are used.
Hima customers who already use Hi-Quad systems benefit from the upgrade to Hi-Quad X with short plant outages and considerably reduced costs when compared to new installations. The I/O modules including field wiring can continue to be used. This enables users to make savings in terms of investment and costs for testing and documentation.
Adaptable and user-friendly
The independent refrigeration and air conditioning specialist Bitzer has expanded its range of condensing units to include a new series. The seven air cooled Ecolite models have been designed for low and medium temperature applications and are available in an attractive housing.
The three Ecolite LHL3E condensing units with one fan and the four LHL5E models with two fans open up a wide range of applications, from 1.5 kW to 5 kW in the low temperature refrigeration range and from 3.5 kW to 16 kW in the medium temperature range. All seven models in the new series have been designed as standard for a wide range of both low and medium temperature applications – for example, in cold stores, display counters and small shops. Their compact, low sound design and the use of efficient components in combination with the capacity control of the semi-hermetic compressors make them exceptionally adaptable.
Flexible and compact
Thanks to the Varistep mechanical capacity control, all Ecolite condensing units offer stepless capacity adjustment in a range from 50 to 100 per cent. The LHL5E models enable flexible capacity control between 10 and 100 per cent as an optional feature. Ecolite has also been specially developed for low sound operation and features a robust and corrosion-resistant housing for outdoor use. Thanks to their compact construction, the condensing units can also be easily integrated even when space is limited. Another advantage of the series is the low refrigerant charge required thanks to efficient mini-channel condensers with a high heat transfer rate. The company has also integrated proprietary components optimised for the system as well as its Ecolite reciprocating compressors into the Ecolite series.
Future-proof and sustainable
Ecolite condensing units are easy to use, have control software developed by Bitzer and work very reliably thanks to the well-known development and production work at Bitzer. Users benefit from the fact that all components are precisely matched to one another. The entire series is Ecodesign-compliant and has been designed for use with common refrigerants, including those with a low global warming potential such as HFO blends. The extensive equipment and plug-and-play concept make installing and commissioning the condensing units very quick and easy.
Intuitive and convenient
All the components of the Ecolite condensing units are easily accessible, whilst its controller offers intuitive operation and enables use of the Bitzer Electronics Service Tool (BEST). BEST assures a user-friendly overview of parameters and the operating status and also offers support via a data logging function and the convenient setting of parameters. And with their optional accessories, the Ecolite condensing units show their practical side too: for example, a second capacity control for the LHL5E models, an oil separator with check valve and a temperature sensor for operation based on room temperature are available.