Monday 14 January 2013

New heat treatment facility

Construction work is now underway on Keighley Laboratories’ new heat treatment processes building, at its West Yorkshire headquarters (GB). After a detailed topographical survey, site clearance and levelling, the steelwork is now being erected and the building is due for completion in February, with the mechanical and electrical (M&E) services scheduled for completion by next summer.

Representing a total capital investment in excess of £1 million, the purpose-built unit will house furnaces, controls and ancillary equipment for new and complimentary processes, augmenting Keighley Labs’ existing array of heat treatment services.

MD Debbie Mellor in site excavator
“We are effectively in the first stage of moving forward again as a company, by making a sizeable investment in new facilities and positioning ourselves with some of the best resources in the industry,” says Keighley Labs MD, Debbie Mellor, who took time out from her busy schedule to be pictured at the controls of a site excavator. “In this new building, we shall have modern furnace equipment and the most sophisticated process controls, enabling us to regulate precisely the parameters to suit clients’ exact specifications. We shall offer a service that is second-to-none, from a single site at the heart of the engineering and aviation supply industry.”

Adjacent to the existing induction hardening department and now sharing a common despatch yard, the new 5,000sq ft building is being clad in the same grey-blue coated steel wall and roofing sheets. Before construction could commence, 2H Architecture, supervised the initial enabling contract, which involved demolishing the previous maintenance building.

“Given the heat output from the furnaces, we have taken these thermal installation requirements into account when designing the building envelope,” says 2H co-founder Brenden Harrison. “We are working to current building regulations for walls, flooring and roof plus 20%, to ensure optimum energy efficiency for the new building and reduce running costs.”

The interior will accommodate the heat treatment furnaces, programmable controllers, degreasing equipment and post-process wash units, with a main side entrance to suit the proposed workflow.

Keighley Labs anticipates that the markets that will be served by these new processes will include products such as gears, crankshafts, valve parts, camshafts, cylinders, railway braking systems, pump components and pipeline fittings. Full-time positions will be created by the new heat treatment facility, together with several apprenticeship opportunities, adding to an existing headcount of 65 personnel.

The site architects are 2H Architecture of Leeds, the main contractor is Triton Construction of Liversedge and the M&E services are being provided by Dualtec of Keighley.

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