GA Trade May-Jun interactive - page 20

A
erzenUSA, a subsidiary of
AerzenerMaschinenfabrik
GmbH located in Coatesville,
Pennsylvania, just celebrated their
30thAnniversary in the United
States. Over those thirty years, their
products andmanufacturing process-
es have changed. As Aerzen, and
theirmachines, move into 21st
Centurymanufacturing, they face
new challenges in technology and
workforce development.
Aerzenmanufactures blowers,
compressors, and high vacuum boost-
ers; and is one of the leading
application and design specialists in
rotary lobe compressors, positive
displacement blowers, screw com-
pressors and turbo blowers. Their
products are critical to a number of
industries includingwaste-water
treatment, cement, plastics, petro-
leum, and food processing. Jim
Welch, Import/Export Administrator
at AerzenUSA says, “Our products
are known for their energy efficiency
and customizability. For example, we
have a customer inBeacon, NYwho
is currently saving $400 a day in
electricity using ourmachines.We
can build amachine specifically for a
customer, so that customer can
maximize themachine’s use.”
Themachines are assembled in the
Coatesvillewarehouse from compo-
nents shipped fromAerzen in
Germany.Welch notes that efficiency
is in every element of the production
chain: "After a brief trial, we
switched to using the Port of Phila-
delphia becausewe found the rates
and transit times to be better. Now
we can get products to customers
more quickly.”
Upon arrival, eachmachine is
assembled by a specially trained team,
operatingwithin a "leanmanufactur-
ing cell."A "lean cell" is efficient
because it groups process flow,
technical competencies, tools, and
workers by function. For example, in
the cell thatmanufactures high speed
turbo blowers, each type of compo-
nent is separated on a large rolling
tray that workersmove from blower to
blower andmotor tomotor.When the
motor and blower package is com-
plete, themotormoves to the testing
cell. The assembly area is spotless and
the entire facility is surprisingly
quiet–minus the rock n’ roll playing
on a small stereo. “This type of lean
cell process also ensures higher levels
of safety forworkers,” says John
Buchner,MaterialsManager for
AerzenUSA. It is no surprise that
AerzenUSA recentlywon the “Best
Places toWork inPA” award.
Once aweek, all available employees
gather for ameeting to discuss current
projects, successes, and learning
experiences. Buchner says, “Our
philosophy is to learn from our
mistakes, and to innovate by utilizing
one of our best resources – our
employees.” The interior of both the
warehouse and the corporate offices
lend themselves to collaboration and
transparency andCEOPierreNoack
and themanagement teamhave an
open door policy. AerzenUSA is also
committed to two concepts: sustain-
ability and social responsibility. The
company’smain building is a LEED
S P O T L I G H T S
Training theNext Generation ofWorkers
for theNext Generation of Products
21st CenturyManufacturing
AerzenUSA
By Lindi vonMutius, GACC
AerzenUSA’sheadquarters inCoatesville, Pennsylvania
20
GermanAmerican TradeMay/June 2014
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