State of the Art Facility is Part of an Ongoing Program to Further Enhance Products Offered by the Organisation
15 October 2012, Burton-upon-Trent, UK — Doncasters, an international recognised precision engineering and manufacturing company, announced today that it has opened a new state of the art R&D facility designed to further enhance their capabilities in engineering the processes and practices used in the company’s efforts to produce highest quality components offered to customers in a wide range of precision-product industries.
The new R&D facility is based in Droitwich, UK and is designed to standardise knowledge and skills used across the wide range of manufacturing divisions within Doncasters. As part of an ongoing program, Doncasters aims to enhance its offering to customers by both ensuring consistent product quality improvement and reducing scrap rates across all of Doncasters’s divisions.
The facility, run by a specialized team, will accomplish these initiatives by carrying out detailed material and process modelling, testing and analysis. It will also study variability in characteristics of Doncasters’s incoming and component materials to facilitate the development of robust manufacturing technologies.
Doncasters manufactures a variety of products including airfoils, structures, casings, rings, exhausts and combustion components for gas turbine applications; aerostructures and components for airframe applications; compressor and turbine wheels for the turbocharger market; and ranges of fastenings for construction, industrial, truck, recreational and military markets.
Head of the facility’s team and former Professor of Casting Technology at the University of Birmingham, Nick Green says, “We have brought together a team who are each recognised as leaders in their areas of activity. The comprehensive and complimentary facilities and staff skills we are investing in will enable systematic investigation and study founded in materials science. We recognise that truly robust solutions can only be achieved by accurate experimental measurement supported by numerical prediction and description of natural variability in materials and processes and their interactions. Our approach will enable us to work with our customers to develop optimised products from the outset of projects instead of prototypes.” He concluded, “Much of the work at the Centre will be undertaken in the Group companies or by staff seconded in to the Centre in a matrix structure. This will ensure relevance and focus whilst developing and growing skills within the business.”
In addition, Doncasters will use this facility in the future to boost its customers’ research and development efforts. Doncasters customers frequently outsource R&D so, going forward, the organization aims to support them by using the new facility to develop cost effective, high performance solutions in partnership to reduce R&D costs.
Relationships with universities often prove essential to securing R&D investment, and Doncasters’s new facility has already been awarded an Industry Fellowship from The Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of science. This award includes a grant, which allows a leading academic scientist to work with Doncasters for 50 percent of their time for four years. The award was designed to enhance knowledge transfer in science and technology between those in industry and those in academia in the UK.
About The Doncasters Group:
The Doncasters Group is a leading international manufacturer of performance and tolerance critical engineering components for a variety of end market applications. Doncasters excels in working with alloys and metals that are difficult to shape and form, and that are required to operate in demanding ambient conditions.
The company’s unparalleled range of products and processes has been developed to offer customers a broad, vertically integrated capability. Core manufacturing processes include precision casting, forging, fabrication, machining and production of superalloys.
Key products include turbine airfoils, rings & casings, structural castings, compressor airfoils, combustion components and fabrications & exhausts for application in gas turbine engines, aerostructures and components for airframe applications, compressor and turbine wheels for the speciality turbocharger market, and ranges of fastenings for construction, industrial, truck, recreational and military markets. The company offers well-developed supply chain integration solutions, delivering complex assemblies and engine-ready components to its customers.
Doncasters currently employs approximately 5,000 people across the UK, Continental Europe, USA, China and Mexico. The Group has institutionalised lean manufacturing and Six Sigma principles throughout its operations.