Original Date: 07/10/2006
Revision Date: / /
Best Practice : Industrial Operations Facility
The Industrial Operations Facility is a centralized parts-finishing building that contains updated media blasting, metal treatment, and painting processes for finishing and refinishing of component parts and assemblies. The use of new equipment, technology, and improved shop layout in the Industrial Operations Facility has resulted in improved workflow, material handling, quality, and environmental controls.
The Industrial Operations Facility (IOF) is a centralized parts-finishing building that contains updated media blasting, metal treatment and painting processes for finishing and refinishing of component parts and assemblies. Prior to the opening of the IOF in 2001, the technology used in the industrial shops dated to the 1950s and 1970s, with antiquated equipment and processes. The shops were located in different areas, requiring part transport to be planned and scheduled. There was no central staging area; rather, supplies and parts were stored in the aisles amid the office/workbench setting or within the shop itself. Waste-water treatment was at maximum capacity, and none of the water used in the plating area was recycled. The plating shop suffered from inadequate crane coverage, untreated tank emissions, and inefficient rinsing of parts. There was also little in-process hazardous material storage. The inability to expand or modernize forced the design and construction of the IOF building.
The IOF was designed and built to increase capability and productivity as well as to address environmental concerns. The IOF employs the use of new equipment and technology, as well as improved shop layout. Industrial metal- finishing operations are now separated from other administrative and manufacturing areas and finishing shops are centrally located in close proximity to one another, allowing for better material flow. The size of shop areas increased from 37,000 square feet to 91,000 square feet, providing the capability to handle increased workload. A central staging area of 4,000 square feet was incorporated, simplifying parts tracking and keeping pallets off the floor while reducing clutter.
In addition to productivity improvements, environmental process controls also improved significantly. The IOF contains a waste-water treatment plant capable of handling 1,000,000 gallons of water per month. Reverse osmosis and membrane technology is used to remove contaminants and recycle 90% of the groundwater resources used to operate the facility. Plating shop tank emissions are scrubbed and removed from the exhausted air stream, and a push/pull ventilation system reduces the amount of air exhausted from the shop. Multiple rinse tanks with counter current deionized water rinsing are used, allowing for improved quality rinsing and less water usage. Several tanks also use ultrasonic rinsing for hard-to-rinse parts. Microfiltration and enhanced metal precipitation chemistry have resulted in the reduction of metal pollutants below the detection limits of monitoring instruments. The IOF also contains 2,000 square feet of hazardous material storage space and an increase in crane coverage exceeding 100% of the larger plating tanks.
The IOF has resulted in improved workflow, material handling, and quality. The efficient layout of the shop areas has decreased the part transport distance between shops by 450 feet. The overall square footage of shop space has increased by 145%, and the number of cranes in the plating area has increased by over 300%. The drying capacity in the paint area has increased by 100%, allowing parts to be dried in a timely manner. Ninety percent of the water in the plating shop is recycled, which means that only 10% of the water needs to be treated. The use of reverse osmosis reduced the estimated size of the treatment plant by 75%. Significant improvements in productivity and environmental controls have been realized as a result of new equipment, technology, and improved shop layout in the IOF.
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