As Project Manager for the Laser Analysis Division (LAD) of Yokogawa, Phillip Proctor has helped his company solve big problems for customers. Yokogawa Electrical Corporation is engaged in an intense transformation from an instrumentation and control system hardware provider to a solutions provider – one that spans the fields of test and measurement, industrial automation and control, and information systems. Yokogawa’s Laser Analysis Division is no exception. They specialize in a spectroscopic analyzer that has virtually no peer in the industry for detecting extremely low levels of particular gases in industrial processes using lasers.
The LAD, as one would assume, targets chemical plants and other large-scale manufacturing facilities that can use such detailed and critical analysis down to the part-per-million, such as O2 and CO detection in combustion stacks. While the products they sell, such as the line of Tunable Diode Laser Analyzers, are all made in Yokogawa’s Georgia facility, they all find their way to the Webster, Texas facility where Proctor works. “If a TDLS Analyzer goes anywhere in the world, it goes through here,” shared Phillip.
Streamline production while maintaining quality.
What typically happens in the Webster facility is the Yokogawa team there prepares the final product by installing custom additions to the analyzer to optimize it for customer use. “These analyzers are some of the most robust analyzers available that can perform in very corrosive, high temperature and pressure environments. A few years ago when we introduced them, demand was through the roof,” added Proctor. “With that demand, we began looking at ways to streamline what we were doing in customization because we couldn’t build them fast enough.” At the heart of the problem was responding to rapid growth while maintaining consistency in making the utility panels, a critical part of their product mix.
Swagelok Custom Solutions: Fabricated & Assembly Solutions
Scott Breaux, the Swagelok Southeast Texas Sales Representative that manages the relationship with Yokogawa’s Laser Division, proposed an idea. “You know, we could do that for you,” offered Scott, during a discussion of the problem with Phillip. Scott put Proctor in touch with the Swagelok Southeast Texas team, which included David Stedman – Director of Services. David actually engineered some of the components to streamline the assembly, as well as design and implement a customized process.
“It has been an excellent collaboration,” shared Phillip. “Once I told them what I needed, I didn’t have to think that much about it.”
Reduced a 100+ piece process down to 4
The Swagelok team has been able to reduce the assembly of a ‘quad’ panel, which literally used hundreds of component parts, down to a four-component procedure. The ‘single’ panel process is now simply one single package with no assembly procedure.
“From prior experience at Dow and Shell, I’ve always been aware that Swagelok made the finest quality fluid control system products anywhere. I specified Swagelok whenever I could, sometimes against the recommendations of accounting and purchasing, which thought they had found a cheaper alternative. I knew better. Saving money now meant paying much more later for losses and leaks that lead to additional costs and, in some cases, safety issues,” added Proctor.
“What really struck me was how Swagelok’s Custom Solutions team could really deliver. When we build these panels for our customers, they have to work and work consistently. The new process saved us immense time and headache, and still upheld our commitment to our customer. What I didn’t count on was that we had an accidental benefit: the streamlined process that Swagelok engineered greatly reduced the size of the final product. Now, we are finding it has multiple uses in areas we hadn’t thought of. It’s opening up new opportunities.”
With Swagelok’s heritage of quality and consistency, the product has always been a benefit. Now, Swagelok has carried that heritage to a commitment of solving its customer’s biggest problems, and tailoring a solution unique to them.
To find out how the Swagelok Southeast Texas team can solve a problem for your company, contact us at 281.422.3533, or email Sales@SoutheastTexas.Swagelok.solutions.