Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Cummins breaks ground on new technical center

Written by  William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief
Cummins Inc. has begun construction of a global technical center office for its High-Horsepower Engine Business at its Seymour, Ind., facility on June 16. The Seymour Technical Center will be co-located with the Seymour Engine Plant in close proximity to 22 test cells dedicated to engine research and development work for mining, rail, oil and gas, marine, power generation and industrial applications.

The technical center and the ongoing expansion of the manufacturing plant at the Cummins Seymour facility represent an investment of more than $250 million through 2015. The new office building is expected to be ready by August 2015 to accommodate more than 600 specialized engineers and technicians within an eco-friendly working environment.

The Seymour Technical Center “will become the global focal point for Cummins engine development and low-emissions technology for 19- to 120-liter engine platforms,” Cummins said. “Close working connections will be maintained with the worldwide Cummins engineering community at other high-horsepower sites in the U.S., United Kingdom, China, and India.”

SeymourGroundbreaking“The completion of the new office building for the high-horsepower technical center will represent an important step forward in the transformation of the Seymour site to an industry-leading facility for engine design, testing, and manufacturing with world-class credentials,” said Vice President and General Manager-Cummins High-Horsepower Engine Business Ed Pence. “The additional capability at Seymour in terms of research and development will power Cummins high-horsepower business ahead by introducing new diesel engines attaining more than 5,000 hp and with best-in-class low emissions technology. A significant landmark will be achieved at Seymour later this year with the production start-up of the QSK95, initially for locomotive and power generation applications. The QSK95 is the most powerful engine ever built by Cummins, with up to 4,400 hp output.”

Pence added that “rapid progress has also been made with introducing ultra-low emissions technology across the high-horsepower product range, by using Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) exhaust aftertreatment technology designed and manufactured by Cummins. Already in production at the plant is the QSK19 underfloor railcar engine, the first in the industry certified to U.S. EPA Tier 4 final regulations ahead of the Jan. 1, 2015, effective date.”

The architectural layout of the new technical center office building will be specially designed to encourage collaborative working, as it brings together all of Cummins high-horsepower engineers from several locations in Indiana into a single facility together with newly recruited employees. “The new Seymour Technical Center will create a highly productive working environment to foster innovation and accelerate our development programs so that we can bring new products to market faster for our customers,” said Cummins High-Horsepower Engineering Vice President Jim Trueblood. “The state-of-the-art test cells and laboratories we now have in place at Seymour bring a new capability by replicating the real-world duty-cycle conditions of equipment to a level of precision not seen before. That means we can precisely calibrate the engine from a much earlier point in the development process for specific applications.”

The engineers at the technical center will have access to 22 engineering test cells at the Seymour plant, including 12 new cells recently installed with up to 7,000-hp capability, sized for generator sets and power modules as well as engines. The test-cell work can focus on specific aspects such as fuel efficiency, engine endurance under high load factors, or near-zero emissions measurement. Engines can be tested on every type of diesel and natural gas fuel, including fuel blends.

“By starting with a clean-sheet architectural design, the new office building for the Seymour Technical Center will set new standards for a sustainable and eco-friendly operation,” added Trueblood. “Features such as passive solar management for daylight control and active energy-efficiency management will reduce the carbon footprint of the building to the lowest possible levels. The latest ergonomic designs are used throughout the workspaces and for high-tech audiovisual capabilities.”