UEA Set to Open New R&D Lab

Posted on Wednesday, February 26, 2014 in UEA Blog

UEA is currently in the process of renovating a 1200 square foot building to be used primarily for research and development purposes.  Previously used for vehicle and excess inventory storage, the building has high ceilings, a garage entrance and a side entrance. These features will make a great space to move our R & D testing.  The main goal of the new space is to organize all of the R & D equipment and testing done for shifters, cable reels, and especially for sip rings in one area of the plant instead of separate areas where space permits.  Hydraulic Swivel development will continue separately from the newly renovated space at this time.  With the first test stands up and running already, the main goal of the specified R & D space is to continue testing new designs, concepts, and materials as part of our continuous improvement process.   Due to the complicated nature of interacting surfaces in motion, the best way to understand how new products/materials will actually perform is by simply putting them on a test stand to replicate actual life wear.

The building also offers many opportunities to grow the research and development department as well.  The space will also be used for validating new designs with the following testing available.

  • Product life testing under mechanical and electrical loads
  • Hi-Pot testing to test maximum voltage
  • Current overload testing
  • Ethernet Certification testing

The space will also give UEA a place to store and maintain our dynamic test stands.  These steel tables can be configured with different pneumatic cylinders, electric motors, programmable logic controls, data acquisition boards and various fixtures in order to test the life of a shift control, cable reel or even a slip ring under mechanical load.  Because the building is isolated from the rest of the production shop and offices, we now have the ability to run fatigue and tests to failure that produce excessive noise.  The renovated facility will help ensure that UEA is an industry leader in sliding electrical contact technology.

Kyle Riegel

Design Engineer