Marl doubles LED assembly output in the UK
09 July 2012
Marl International has invested £150,000 to double its manufacturing output at its site in Ulverston, Cumbria, putting it in a prime position to benefit from the rapid growth of an emerging ‘green’ lighting technology.
The line has been specially modified to handle PCB boards of up to 600mm long, much more than the standard length. Such boards are commonly required to replace conventional lighting products. The announcement brings the investment made by Marl in its UK manufacturing facility to £270,000 altogether.
Marl is not only ramping-up its output of LED lighting modules that act as a direct replacement for much less efficient lighting technologies, but will also enter the electro-mechanical module assembly business aiming to match offshore pricing with quality, UK manufactured products.
Existing customers include the Formula 1 Association, British Energy and the British Waterways Board.
According to Marl Managing Director, Adrian Rawlinson: “LED lighting can be 20-60% more efficient than standard lighting technologies, lasting up to ten times longer and providing an instant, controllable source of illumination. Marl is unique in being able to design and manufacture LED lighting modules entirely under one roof in Ulverston, where most competitors outsource parts of the design or manufacturing process. This gives Marl a short leadtime, and the ability to bring to market the latest, most efficient LED lighting technologies ahead of competitors. We can offer fast turn-around and competitive pricing on small volumes, but with our sourcing and logistics expertise we can match offshore manufactured price levels on much higher volumes as well.”
Marl Operations Director, David Moorhouse added: “We can see many customers in the UK who would like to use LED lighting in place of less efficient technologies, but they lack the capability to assemble these very specialist devices and the associated circuits. Marl can fill this gap, often providing a bespoke product that is a direct drop-in replacement for the less efficient solution – speeding up the adoption of efficient LED lighting technology. Customers like the quality and the service they receive from Marl and often come back to us and ask us to build other electromechanical modules as well. With this investment, we have the capacity to offer this service too.”
The new line has been accommodated at Marl’s existing premises, which have been extensively refurbished to accommodate the equipment. A team from Marl’s 120 Ulverston staff has been retrained to operate the new line, which is fully automated, and will run on a 24-hour shift basis.
Marl has experienced rapid, profitable growth over the last two years and has funded the investment from the cash that it has generated. In October 2011, Marl announced a £120,000 investment in its prototyping facilities.
The new production line at Ulverston can assemble 22,000 surface mount components per hour including LED diodes onto printed circuit boards. At the front end, it has a Nutek NTE0710XL single magazine line loader. It also features a DEK03iX SMT Screen Printer, which respects the environment by using a water-soluble agent to clean the underside of the screen / foil combined with a vacuum system, eliminating the need for chemical cleaners. It also has a Mydata MY9 SMT Placer and a BTU 100a oven.
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