Products in use
For over four decades it has been our focus to engineer products that reduce the cost of cutting metal and therefore make our customers' processes more efficient.
This idea of "doing more with less" pertains to the ability to cut thicker and faster with the same or lower amperage than was previously possible. A good example of this is the HPR260 cutting at 260amps at the speed of previous 400amp systems - this greatly reduces environmental impact due to less power required. Our new technologies, such as PowerPierce, push this even further by allowing a customer to production cut thicker material than was previously possible with their lower amperage system. The cutting quality achieved today is vastly superior to previous generations, virtually eliminating the need for secondary operations that require additional electricity and time. As we have increased the capabilities of our cutting systems we have also reduced the number of parts within them, thereby reducing the components that must be purchased, transported, and recycled. The HSD130 has 46% fewer parts than its predecessor, the MAX200.
Electrical efficiency is another area of innovation that has brought improved environmental impact. This includes both harmonic efficiency (or power factor - i.e. "how efficient is the power transfer from the electrical utility to our equipment") and absolute efficiency of our power supply. In this case our newest mechanized power supplies have power factors as high as 0.99 (1.0 is perfect), and total efficiency ratings well over 90%. This compares quite well to efficiencies of less than 70% from older power systems. The entire Powermax line of air plasma cutters use inverter technology resulting in lighter, smaller more efficient systems. Combined with the patented use of Digital Signal Processing (DSP), Powermax models have far fewer electronic components and consume less energy than previous generations.
The innovations we have brought to market with our consumables have also had a powerful environmental improvement. Some of our newer technology consumables last more than twice as long as their predecessors, resulting in far fewer consumables, and therefore fewer raw materials such as copper, silver, and hafnium, being used in a cutting operation.
We have also taken the opportunity to leverage a regulatory requirement in one area of our global marketplace to improve the products sold in all markets. The European Union's Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive became a catalyst in 2006 to make our entire line of Powermax products RoHS compliant. That required new engineering solutions for the use of lead-free solder.
Our power supplies are shipped in non-bleached cardboard with a minimum of 30% recycled content. We have reduced the packaging around our consumables and continue to look for innovative shipping and store display solutions.