No business has been left untouched by COVID-19. The global pandemic has created an unprecedented uncertainty for business operations as numerous federal and state governments instituted travel bans and national lockdowns to mitigate the spread of the virus. TLT-Turbo has taken numerous steps to ensure operational continuity for our clients’ ventilation equipment and have launched several new platforms for the delivery of field services. These new platforms will be showcases in an upcoming webinar available by invitation to TLT-Turbo clients in Germany.
Many of our clients run the world’s most essential businesses – mines, manufacturing plants, power generation plants and processing plants. Some are facing the challenges of operating a business through unprecedented shutdowns or feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. None of us could have foreseen the scenarios we are now facing – but at TLT-Turbo we have taken steps to ensure that we are facing them together. And whatever scenario your business finds itself in today, TLT-Turbo is here to help you keep your operations running.
As TLT-Turbo continues to navigate the changing tides posed by this pandemic, our priorities remain the same – to provide excellent, swift, and expert services.
We invite you to join us for a webinar session in which we present how TLT-Turbo is using innovation, creative thinking, and new tools to evolve and address customers’ critical needs now and in the future as we move towards the post-COVID-19 era.
Key discussion points will include:
TLT-Turbo Remote Service Support: Expert support to beat downtime is just one click away
TLT-Turbo’s Service Centre of Excellence: Bringing together our experts to help our customers succeed
TLT-Turbo Field Service Continuity Program: Maintain field service team availability under travel restrictions
Following the first official response statement on the global coronavirus pandemic, TLT-Turbo has continued to prove operational resilience in its operations across the globe. This is largely due to the efforts of the TLT-Turbo global team and the implementation of various innovative measures including remote service support and virtual model acceptance testing. These factors have allowed TLT-Turbo to continue providing the high level of service that their clients have come to expect – with some formally showing their appreciation for the ways in which TLT-Turbo’s support has contributed to their operational continuity.
In the three months since TLT-Turbo released their initial COVID-19 response statement, they have announced several new contracts for high profile clients across the globe. Most notably this includes the supply of Sinter fans and two CDQ fans for various clients in China and an order for low flow MVR fans to a client in Colombia.
TLT-Turbo, Global Co-Managing Director, Rainer Redinger: “We knew that to a large extent our resilience in the face of such a significant global challenge would stem from the expertise and commitment of the TLT-Turbo global team. Securing of these orders demonstrates the perseverance of the sales representatives and engineers involved and speaks to the reliability of our products on the market. These same factors will ensure that we endure through the COVID-19 pandemic and current global market downturns and emerge stronger than ever.”
Travel restrictions imposed around the globe, posed a challenge to the delivery of TLT-Turbo services and fans. TLT-Turbo implemented Remote Service Support that facilitates remote service, maintenance, repairs and troubleshooting. Using an audio-visual connection that allows the exchange of images and data between TLT-Turbo experts and customers, TLT-Turbo’s team can guide customers through the process of making simple repairs and adjustments in real time.
Along with this, to facilitate the delivery and commissioning of new fans, TLT-Turbo’s R&D team have also rolled out Virtual Model Acceptance Testing. TLT-Turbo made aerodynamic model acceptance measurements and final acceptance testing available for customers to attend virtually. They are now done through software that combines video conferences with a connection to virtual reality on smartphones, tablets, smart glasses or a video screen.
“This is a major advancement in the digitalization of our offering. In future, even as we move into a post-COVID world, these platforms will remain an alternative option to conventional model acceptance testing, trouble shooting, repairs, inspections and many other services for all customers as it saves them both time and money,” Mr. Redinger explains.
These efforts add to the crucial support of the regional TLT-Turbo offices across the globe that are starting to re-opening following various national lockdowns. TLT-Turbo Africa has been operational through the continuing national lockdown in South Africa that was instituted on 26 March 2020. They have been registered as an essential service which allows for manufacturing activities with 30% of their usual staff complement per shift. “We are currently on a two-shift system of six hours per shift for operational staff. Even with limited staff, we have managed to make key deliveries to our customers,” says TLT-Turbo Managing Director, Christo Gelderblom who goes to explain that strict hygiene and safety protocols are being adhered to and that non-essential staff are still working from home. “We have received a number of orders since we returned to work and are expecting a few more in the weeks to come as South Africa’s lockdown alert levels are being lowered.”
In Korea, TLT-Turbo representatives have been able to recommence visits and meetings at client sites while adhering to strict hygiene, prevention and social distancing measures. The regional office has reported that they are almost back to business as usual while taking every measure to protect the health and safety of their staff. Their manufacturing facility continues to be fully operational.
Currently, TLT-Turbo manufacturing facilities in the USA, Germany and China are also operational. TLT-Turbo Global Co-Managing Director, Minggang Wan: “We have done everything in our power to keep our processes running as smoothly as possible. We have complied with all required hygiene regulations and have developed our own additional safety measures to ensure that our staff are taken care of. We have also ensured that our customers are able to reach us by making our team accessible on electronic platforms as they continue to work from home.”
This accessibility has allowed TLT-Turbo’s customers to continue to rely on the products and services that play a crucial role in their daily operations. Several customers have sent in words of gratitude for the role that TLT-Turbo’s products and support have played in keeping them going.
Currently, TLT-Turbo continues to encourage concerned clients and suppliers to reach out their TLT-Turbo representatives in the various regions. Locate your nearest point of contact here.
An important task carried out by TLT-Turbo is the conducting of aerodynamic model acceptance measurements and final acceptance tests in the presence of our customers. These tests demonstrate the aerodynamic performance of TLT-Turbo fans on a model test stand to meet the required fan characteristics.
Model tests are significantly cheaper and less complex than conducting tests on a full-size performance test stand (FSPT) such as the one that TLT-Turbo has set-up in Chengdu, China. TLT-Turbo has various model test stands at their facilities in Germany and is able to test different diameters of axial fans, centrifugal fans and full-size jet fans.
Due to the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is not possible to host clients for witnessing tests at our R&D center in Zweibruecken. In an effort to continue providing excellent customer service and for current orders to move ahead, TLT-Turbo has found a solution – making acceptance tests available for customers to attend virtually!
Inspired by the global movement to move physical business processes such as meetings and inspections online, TLT-Turbo started looking for a software solution that would allow them to conduct virtual aerodynamic model acceptance tests.
The solution was found through software, which allows classic video conferences to be combined with a connection to virtual reality on smartphones, tablets, smart glasses, or a video screen. This makes it possible for participants in a teleconference meeting to see and experience everything as if they were nearby.
“Our team has run through the process and rehearsed internally to make sure that we are ready to fully cover every aspect of the testing and we are ready to offer this service to our clients to allow work and delivery of fans to continue,” says Dr. Sebastian Fleder, TLT-Turbo Product Manager for Aftermarket and Services. “This is a major advancement in the digitalization of our offering. In future, even as we move into a post-COVID world, this model will remain an alternative option to conventional model acceptance testing, trouble shooting, inspections and many other services for all customers as it saves them both time and money.”
If you would like more information about TLT-Turbo’s ‘Remote Service Support’ or you need fan expert’s assistance, please use the contact form on our website or contact your local TLT-Turbo representative.
Like the rest of the world, India is facing the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and the effects of their own national lockdown. Those living below the poverty line as well as day workers and laborers have been particularly hard hit by the nationwide lockdown that started on 23 March 2020.
India’s Prime Minister addressed the nation and requested support for those in need. To facilitate donations, a special PM Office bank account was set up for individuals and organizations who wished to play their part in helping the nation’s needy.
While working from home, the team at TLT-Turbo India started discussing the unthinkable challenges facing their less fortunate fellow citizens and decided that they wanted to step up. In a moving and overwhelmingly generous gesture, the entire team decided to donate one day’s salary to the cause. This response on an individual level inspired TLT-Turbo India management to match their donations as a company. Together they reached a total amount of just over 100 000 Rupees (1300 Euro) which was deposited into the PM Office account.
“We felt a responsibility towards this cause. We are grateful to be able to continue working from home when so many others cannot work at all. The TLT-Turbo India team working from home are in contact every day and through our discussions it came to light that this cause was something we were all thinking about. I know that this amount may not be as high as some donations by larger companies, but our intent and philosophy is always do what we can to care for others and I am so proud of my team for making this happen,” says Pankaj Sohoni, TLT-Turbo India Managing Director.
Global Managing Director, Rainer Redinger applauded TLT-Turbo India for their generosity and sense of responsibility toward their fellow citizens. “Civic duty and pride are near to our hearts at TLT-Turbo. This donation demonstrates this part of our corporate culture perfectly. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and the various lockdowns that have been put in place across the world, the TLT-Turbo Global Team continues to show not only astounding resilience and motivation but also empathy for those who have been hardest hit. I would like to personally thank TLT-Turbo India for leading by example and for showing the world how unified action and solidarity can make a difference.”
TLT-Turbo GmbH, global ventilation fans and systems manufacturer, today announced its success in winning a contract for the supply of Sinter fans, including complete drive system, to Baosteel for the Wuhan Sinter Project. The announcement comes amid the COVID-19 global health crisis and further indicates improving business conditions in Wuhan.
TLT-Turbo has secured a contract together with consortium partner, TMEIC (Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corporation) for the supply of two complete fan systems to Baosteel. Headquartered in Shanghai, China, Baosteel is globally recognised as one of the most competitive iron and steel companies with the highest level of modernization in China.
TLT-Turbo’s delivery on the project will include the supply of two sinter waste gas fans as well as the accompanying drive motors, frequency converters, transformers, switch gears and control panels. TLT-Turbo will also fulfil the role of consortium leader for the project and will take the lead on commissioning and final installation of the fan systems.
“This newly secured contract adds to the growing list of projects that TLT-Turbo has been a part of in China recently – each of which reflects our excellent teamwork and long-term success,” says Ma Le, TLT-Turbo Sales Representative based in the region.
Ma Le adds that this is the fourth contract that TLT-Turbo has won since establishing a working relationship with Baosteel in 2013. Since 2013, TLT-Turbo has delivered a total of eight sinter fans to Baosteel – one of which is the largest operational sinter fan in the world.
“The success of this relationship is built completely on teamwork. The fact that Bao Steel always returns to TLT-Turbo to order our fans also speaks highly of our commitment of quality. The resilience shown by the TLT-Turbo global team is evident in their continued success in securing contracts in this region,” adds Ralph Mansius, TLT-Turbo GmbH Sales Liaison.
A Growing Presence in China
In total, TLT-Turbo has won contracts for 18 Sinter Fans since entering the Sinter market in China in 2012. Aside from their continued success with Baosteel, TLT-Turbo also signed an additional two contracts in China’s sinter market this year.
Another notable success coming out of the region is the continued business in the CDQ (Coke Dry Quenching) market. In 2020, TLT-Turbo has won contracts for a total of 10 CDQ Fans. Says Mansius: “This proves that we are a market leader in our field – and that we are committed to working together as a global team to keep up momentum throughout the COVID-19 crisis.”
Enduring Through the COVID-19 Crisis
Ma Le acknowledges that with the COVID-19 crisis still evolving in all parts of the world, it is to be expected that some orders might be coming in slower than usual. “Businesses across the world will all be bracing for its long-term effects. However, we strongly believe that through the combined efforts of the regional TLT-Turbo teams across the world, we will be able to endure through this crisis and for long after it has passed. We are sincerely thankful to every member of the TLT-Turbo global team for the part they have played in our continued success and resilience. We have all risen to the challenge of temporarily changing how we do things – but this is just another example of Ventilation Redefined.”
TLT-Turbo GmbH, a global
ventilation fans and systems manufacturer with their head office located in Zweibruecken
and production site in Bad Hersfeld (Germany), today announced the donation of
6000 FFP2 masks (also known as particulate filtering face piece) to help
address medical supply shortages in Germany.
The masks were provided as a donation by TLT-Turbo’s parent
company, PowerChina. They will be handed over to health officials from
TLT-Turbo offices in Bad Hersfeld and Zweibrücken on 23 March 2020 for distribution
to hospitals and other first responders facing a shortage of Personal
Protective Equipment (PPE) due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our thoughts are with all those affected by the Coronavirus
outbreak both locally and across the world. TLT-Turbo has operations located on
five continents and so we approach this crisis with a global mindset while also
acting locally within our immediate community. As a company and as individuals,
we recognize the need to support the medical community to help safeguard the
health and safety of German citizens during the Coronavirus crisis. We are
privileged to assist with this donation that will help ease the burden of
healthcare workers and medical personnel,” said TLT-Turbo Global Co-Managing
Director, Mr. Rainer Redinger.
TLT-Turbo Global Co-Managing Director, Mr. Minggang Wan
commented that TLT-Turbo is grateful for the support of their parent company,
PowerChina. “PowerChina and TLT-Turbo have always had a relationship based on
mutual support and cooperation. In this time of need, our relationship allows
us to respond to the challenge facing our colleagues in Germany. We are
grateful for the role that PowerChina has played in allowing TLT-Turbo to make
a meaningful contribution to the fight against COVID-19 in Germany.”
The health and well-being of TLT-Turbo employees, their
families and all German citizens remains a top priority for the company.
TLT-Turbo GmbH is closely
monitoring developments around the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), and our
priority remains the safety of our employees and our clients. Importantly, our
employees remain dedicated to ensuring we deliver on our commitment to our
clients amid these challenging times.
TLT-Turbo, Global Co-Managing Director, Rainer Redinger: “TLT-Turbo
is closely monitoring developments around the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).
As a company with a global footprint, our priority remains the safety of our
employees and our clients. Importantly, we remain dedicated to ensuring that we
deliver on our commitment to our clients amid these challenging times. TLT-Turbo
is taking our response to the developing Coronavirus outbreak seriously and we
have put measures in place to ensure ongoing production and remote assistance
for clients. Ensuring that TLT-Turbo is operationally resilient is of paramount
importance to our clients and organization. As the number of Coronavirus cases
continues to climb, we are taking steps to ensure that we are, in fact,
Specific arrangements for each of
TLT-Turbo’s 15 offices located worldwide will be based on local legislation and
government responses but plans are in place to ensure our operational
Thanks to intensive and
coordinated efforts, the COVID-19 situation in China is improving with the
number of confirmed cases decreasing from last month. TLT-Turbo has received
reports from our office in Sichuan stating that as of 25 March 2020 no
TLT-Turbo employees in the region have been infected with the Coronavirus and
that they are now once again operational. Stringent hygiene and prevention
protocols are in place for all employees and while sales discussions are still
limited to electronic platforms, these developments are encouraging.
manufacturing facilities in the USA, Korea and Germany are also operational. The
staff present at these sites have been provided with personal protective
equipment (PPE) as advised by global health organizations and all recommended
hygiene measures are in place. The number of staff on site has been reduced
where required along with the number of suppliers and external persons allowed
on site. All suppliers are required to comply with TLT-Turbo’s prevention protocols
The closures affecting manufacturing
and delivery currently include TLT-Turbo Africa and TLT-Turbo India who are
subject to government mandated national shutdowns – although this only for a
period of 21 days. For sales offices and smaller branches, TLT-Turbo has implemented
remote working arrangements to ensure that administrational, sales and
consulting processes continue as normal.
Additional measures taken by
TLT-Turbo to protect the health and safety of our staff include cancelling all work-related
travel, restricting client and internal meetings to electronic platforms, and
complying with client hygiene and prevention protocols if and where field
services are conducted.
TLT-Turbo Global Co-Managing
Director, Minggang Wan: “As your trusted ventilation partner, we are taking
every necessary step to continue to provide the high-quality service and
stability you rely on, while safeguarding the health and wellbeing of our
employees and our clients. We have and will continue to take prudent,
precautionary actions that allow us to provide the excellent support you have
come to expect from us – including a focus on leveraging electronic platforms
as far as possible, and flexibility to accommodate client needs and ensuring we
proactively engage with you to gather real-time feedback. Importantly, TLT-Turbo
remains as fully functional as this global crisis allows and we are prepared to
provide continuity of service as the environment around us evolves. We take tremendous
pride in being trusted suppliers to your business and will do everything in our
power to deliver on that promise. Accordingly, we encourage you to contact your
client service teams who are ready to offer assistance in any meaningful way
possible and answer any further questions.”
TLT-Turbo will continue to
monitor this evolving situation in each of our regions of operation and will
ensure swift and decisive responses as the situation changes.
Mr. Wan extends his gratitude to
the agencies, organizations and professionals who have provided guidance to the
company during this challenging period. “In our 145-year history TLT-Turbo has
overcome numerous challenges to our business and survived global events that
have threatened the livelihood of our employees. We have overcome these and
emerged stronger. In the crisis we face today we will take every possible
measure to ensure our continuity and to safeguard the wellbeing of our team
along with our clients’ operations. Although this may be a time of business as
‘un-usual’ we remain agile in our delivery of ventilation solutions.”
We encourage concerned clients and suppliers to reach out their TLT-Turbo representatives in the various regions. Locate your nearest point of contact here.
TLT-Turbo have a long-standing tradition of supplying wind tunnels especially for the motor vehicle and aerospace industry. TLT-Turbo were among the first to focus on aero-acoustic wind tunnel fans. As a supplier for some of the world’s most prominent car manufacturers, TLT-Turbo aims to become renowned as a global leader in wind tunnel fans and systems through continual innovation and a deeply ingrained passion for performance.
The development of wind tunnel production at TLT-Turbo started with their ancestral company, Dinglerwerke, who built their first wind tunnel back in 1936. Decades later, the company now known as TLT-Turbo, would be responsible for some of the world’s most notable wind tunnel installations. “From the start we set out to establish a tradition of being pioneers and innovators in this field of ventilation as we recognized the significance of these systems for vehicle testing,” says Volker Szemskat, Vice President of TLT-Turbo.
TLT-Turbo’s first wind tunnel installation for the motor vehicle industry was built in 1940 for FKFS (Research Institute of Automotive Engineering and Vehicle Engines) in Stuttgart. It was a low speed wind tunnel designed for wind speeds of up to 72 m/s. This wind tunnel was later taken over by Daimler.
Testing vehicles in wind tunnels started with projects such as Peugeot’s passing a car through the Eiffel Wind Tunnel at the rue Boileau, in Paris in 1914. The goal was to gain information on how to modify the shape of models to decrease aerodynamic drag. Since then these types of tests have advanced significantly and today, they are becoming more and more relevant as a means of testing for reducing pollutant and noise emissions. “Even the smallest gain in the aerodynamic drag leads to a decrease in consumption of fuel,” Szemskat explains.
In total, over the past 90 years, TLT-Turbo have supplied around 70 wind tunnels and test stands, of which about 30 were delivered for the automotive industry. This includes more than 70 customized fans ranging from 100 kW to 88.000 kW with diameters from 1 to 15 meters. Among these are some of the most notable facilities in the world – such as the ONERA (French Aerospace Center) Transonic Wind Tunnel S1 in Modane, France, being installed in 1949, with a 2-stage counter-rotating fan measuring 15 m in diameter with a drive power of 88.000 kW. This colossal fan remains to this day the largest wind tunnel fan in the world being in continuous operation since 1952.
Another example of the longevity of TLT-Turbo’s fans is the wind tunnel installed for Volkswagen in 1965. Its 9-meter diameter fan has been in operation in operation for over 50 years.
“The combination of our experience, with the field-proven performance and long operational life spans of these fans has made us a trusted supplier across the globe,” says Szemskat.
This status has been well maintained over the years with clients including Volkswagen, Ferrari, Ford and Audi coming back to TLT-Turbo for repeat orders.
TLT-Turbo’s 145 years of experience in ventilation design and supply has contributed to the innovations and new methods they have been able to apply to their wind tunnel designs. In 2010, TLT-Turbo supplied a fan for an aero-acoustic wind tunnel for the DLR (German Aerospace Center) which features a special blade and guide vane design for particularly low noise generation as well as composite material for the fan blades. Since then, this innovation has been applied to most of their automotive wind tunnel fans.
“Most often the development of innovations in the application of wind tunnels is guided by the needs of a particular client or the project itself. We need to think on our feet to come up with new approaches to solving challenges that arise as a project unfolds. This then informs future designs and installations and ensures that our offering is constantly evolving.”
Some of TLT-Turbo’s latest field-driven innovations include the application of their ‘Cut-off’ and ‘Lean/Sweep’ design that they have applied to their low speed aero-acoustic fan design to reduce blade tone and broadband noise. “We have also been working with the use of composite materials which has allowed us to apply 3D-geometry on the guide vanes which increases efficiency and overall performance,” Szemskat says.
The use of composite materials is also being applied in their current projects for the CAERi and CATARC automotive research institutes in China. These projects are currently in installation and commissioning phase.
For the past 12 twelve years, TLT-Turbo have changed their focus to the centerpiece of wind tunnels; the fan. “In the past, TLT-Turbo supplied turn-key wind tunnel solutions. From 2007, this offering changed to focus solely on the fan itself as the key component of a wind tunnel system. Our clients still benefit from our extensive experience and expertise in complete wind tunnel systems. This allows us to provide a tailored solution because we understand how the separate components interact with each other,” Szemskat reports.
“This gives us greater scope for customization. Every fan and its project planning is adapted to its specific installation. Stand-alone drive systems with local operation, control and monitoring systems and their connection to the parent digital control system also form part of our portfolio. Our experience with the supply and installation of turn-key wind tunnels means that we are able to recognize the significance of specific wind tunnel features to the design of the fan.”
Global ventilation fans
and systems manufacturer, TLT-Turbo GmbH, has announced the redesign of its
Auxiliary and Booster fan range. Developed in close collaboration with clients,
the new designs address both efficiency and cost effectiveness, in a versatile
product range that meets the specific ventilation requirements of the mining
Development of the new fan range concept began in early
2015. Following a lengthy global market study to gain an understanding of the
market requirements, the range was defined in mid-2017, with fabrication of the
first units taking place shortly thereafter. “The development of the Auxiliary
and Booster fan range would not have been possible without the input of
clients. This ensured that we focused on key market driven requirements
including energy efficiency, noise reduction, cost effectiveness and turnaround
time,” says Michael Minges, Technical Director at TLT-Turbo Africa, who headed
up the fans’ designs.
“To sell these products we needed to ensure close customer
relationships and visibility. We are striving to change the industry’s mindset
on the use of such fans to ensure proper fan selection for the ventilation
required. In optimizing mine ventilation, efficient, high quality Auxiliary and
Booster fans can add as much value as surface fan installations.”
TLT-Turbo started commissioning of the first iterations of
the fan range towards the end of 2017 within the Sub-Saharan market through its
Africa office. From there, they based the development of the various fan sizes of
the new range on market interest. The fan designs and their performance
validation was completed at the end of July 2019. They aim to complete product
roll out, with all supporting documents and certification, by the end of
Minges explains that meeting identified market demands was
the main focus of the improved designs. “As energy efficiency is one of the
main drivers of industrial equipment usage, and minimum efficiency requirements
on certain equipment are often legislated, TLT-Turbo identified the need and
opportunity in the market for more efficient mining fans compared to what is
currently in use.”
The new designs include several innovative additions to
enhance performance in order to provide exceptional underground ventilation. The
fan range was developed using the latest in engineering flow technology which
allowed TLT-Turbo to improve the aerodynamics, and thus efficiency of the fans.
A unique stator design and aerodynamic fairings, all manufactured from wear
resistant composite materials, result in improved efficiencies and reduced
noise levels. The modularity of the fan casings allow for quick and easy
assembly with interchangeable ancillary fan parts. The motor mounting in coherence with a
machined impeller track ensures low and controllable blade tip clearances for
improved performance and efficiencies. Pad mount motors are used for all fan
sizes and help reduce vibration levels in the axial direction of the motor
significantly which leads to longer motor bearing life and lower maintenance
Minges says that all possible measures are taken to ensure
the highest quality and best possible performance of every fan supplied by
TLT-Turbo. “All fans are ISO 5801 tested, unless the client agrees to type
testing on higher volume orders. We ensure the client quoted performance is met
before the fans leave the factory. Test certificates on both raw data and
calculated performance can be provided on request. Fan efficiency is determined
with the performance test and this quality check ensures we deliver on what we
promised the client. Clients are regularly invited to witness the performance
tests to sign off on acceptance. The fans also come with pressure ports that
can be hooked up to a calibrated handheld measuring device to measure
In addition to performance and efficiency, ease of
maintenance was also a major consideration in developing the new Auxiliary and
Booster range. The modularity of the product design and the interchangeable standardized
parts allows for quick turnaround time on parts supply. “For example, we only
have two blade types for the full product range and generally only one motor
barrel per fan size accommodating various motor sizes and types. Standardization
on the product is the key to successfully managing maintenance and repair as it
allows ample supply of spares for companies certified to do the repair work.
The design track record has indicated a longer mean time between failure (MTBF)
than previous products,” Minges explains.
The fan range is being rolled out in phases. The preliminary
testing at sites located in Sub-Saharan Africa has been launched successfully.
The next phase is globalization as the new range will be rolled out in the USA,
Canada, Europe, Russia and Australia. Following this, product supply and
support will be extended to TLT-Turbo offices in South America and India. In
the interim though, Minges says that these fans can be supplied to clients
worldwide from TLT-Turbo Africa.
TLT-Turbo Africa has received a number of orders for these
fans since the end of 2017. These orders include South African clients seeking
a solution for deepening a gold mine, and for Kamoa Copper in the DRC as an
exclusive supplier. “The feedback that we have received thus far has been that
the fans are meeting our and client expectations. I am proud to say that one
EPC consultant used the phrase ‘super fan’ to describe the new range and
indicated that he has not heard a fan of this size so quiet before,” says
Minges commenting on the reception of the new range.
“The Auxiliary and Booster fan range was developed to
enhance TLT-Turbo’s mining ventilation product portfolio. The product is based
on historic innovative designs by the TLT-Turbo Africa R&D team. Continual
product development and keeping up to date with the latest technologies is
ingrained within the engineering teams of TLT-Turbo. Ensuring that innovations
are market and client driven with the end result being a benefit to the
industry, puts us in the forefront of advancement in ventilation solutions,”
TLT-Turbo GmbH builds
radial and axial flow fans for virtually any application. First-rate
engineering, tradition and progress in air handling technology and a worldwide support
network have been the cornerstones of their excellent global renown as a fan
and systems manufacturer for more than 140 years. TLT-Turbo GmbH fans and the
associated system components are deployed successfully all over the globe. To
date over 10,000 fans have already been installed. Their subsidiaries, branches
and agencies span the globe including TLT-Turbo offices in Germany, China,
Austria, Russia, South Korea, USA, Chile, Hungary, Australia, India and South
Global ventilation fans
and systems manufacturer, TLT-Turbo GmbH, has spent the past five years
investing in and equipping its on-site test lab. The test lab now provides
streamlined processes for research, advancing product quality and expanded
capabilities for material testing. With a focus on particle impact wear
testing, the test lab is driving innovation forward at TLT-Turbo as the results
help improve product reliability, quality and performance in their final
Patrick Baumgärtner a Research and Development Engineer – and
expert in wear and corrosion protection – at TLT-Turbo, has played an
instrumental role in building up the test lab – located at the TLT-Turbo
Development Centre in Zweibruecken, Germany – to its current capabilities.
Together with Sabine Groh, Industrial Fans Product Manager at TLT-Turbo, they have
been spearheading the current research.
Currently, the core field of research at the test lab is the
testing of new wear-resistant materials and coatings for fan components.
Baumgärtner says that the testing takes place in the lab’s solid particle impact
wear test bench. There, various types of dust or abrasive particles are blasted
onto the test material, varying the angle and speed of the blasting to observe
the resulting wear. “We also carry out caking tests in which we select, for
example, anti-adhesive layers for our fans, in order to find suitable solutions
for customer applications. A further main focus is the analysis of process
residues that can have an abrasive or corrosive effect. Here the composition,
size distributions, pH value and conductivity in the eluate are determined,”
TLT-Turbo’s approach is to continuously test materials,
coatings and components in order to produce fan components that are designed
for performance excellence in any operating environment – no matter how
abrasive. This testing is applied to current and new products in development
but also to samples that are brought in from client sites in order to establish
the wear patterns caused by their specific environment. In this way, TLT-Turbo
is able to provide each client with a customized solution that will last longer
and require less maintenance.
The test lab now offers facilities for metallography, a
stereomicroscope, a pycnometer for determining the density of materials and
coatings, and an automated solid particle impact wear test bench. “The
capabilities of the test lab open a lot of doors for advanced research that
will make a positive contribution to the engineering community at large as
well,” says Baumgärtner. “Under my supervision, studies and thesis research
takes place in the laboratory in cooperation with local colleges and
universities. For me, this is the basis for successfully researching and
developing new solutions in our field.”
According to Groh, the test lab has almost endless
possibilities for the improvement of product delivery to clients. “Our
customers are often operating TLT-Turbo fans in abrasive and/or corrosive
environments. To develop suitable solutions that match the wear resistance
against particle impact we use our automated solid particle impact test bench.
Compressed air accelerates a defined mass flow of abrasive particles to
velocities up to 300 m/s and propels them onto a piece of sample material. This
leads to material loss and wear that we can examine. It is even possible to use original dust from
a customer’s plant to evaluate the most suitable solution for them. By varying
the impact angle we can observe system characteristic wear curves. With this
knowledge we can provide customized solutions for many processes.”
These customized solutions can be best illustrated in the
selection of coatings. This, says Groh, has an immensely positive impact for
TLT-Turbo clients. “If we were to propose a new coating for a customer, the
wear rate of the coating would be determined first. That is the main
scientific-based decision criteria for wear resistant coatings. If the coating
has a superior wear rate compared to other coatings or at least a wear rate
that is on par with other coatings and another beneficial quality such as
anti-stick effect, corrosive resistance or a cost advantage it will be
implemented into TLT´s coating portfolio.”
Groh says that they have also conducted tests that have led
to the development of completely new proprietary coatings. “During the manufacturing
process, coatings were tested to see the influence of welding heat on coating
qualities – such as the development of cracks – to ascertain how to avoid
damage caused by heat or weld splashes. We conducted research and testing on
combining welded coatings and thin layer coating into a Hybrid Coating which
can dramatically increase the operational lifespan of TLT-Turbo fans at their
This is one of numerous examples of how TLT-Turbo’s testing
capability can positively impact ventilation systems across all applications.
“Due to the broad database of wear tests on various materials and coatings, we
are able to offer tailor-made wear protection solutions for various processes
of our customers,” Baumgärtner acknowledges.
Groh agrees, adding that the wide variety of chemical
compositions and coating conditions such as acceleration of coating powder and
heat development make it extremely difficult to objectively find the best coating
by carrying out testing at a customer plant. “The process of reaching just
initial findings in these conditions is very time consuming. In addition to
this, there is a broad variety of conditions to contend with at different
customer plants that hinder an accurate comparison of different coatings at
different plants. If you test different coatings on one machine you might get a
rough estimation what coating is superior, however different wear rates of
coating cause imbalances in the impeller and vibrations at the fan.”
She elaborates by explaining that finding a precise
comparative measurement on different coatings is impossible without being able
to analyse how the wear rate changes at different angles. “At the test lab we
can control the conditions to find precisely what we are looking for in a
shorter timeframe. Additionally we are able to replicate the fan’s operating
environment. We can run tests using dust collected from the client site while
simulating particle speeds that match the client’s environment to precisely
simulate wear rates.”
In the laboratory environment, the TLT-Turbo team is also
able to determine additional coating properties as they have the capability to
run additional experiments, e.g. corrosive resistance, anti-stick effect,
robustness, heat resistance, suitable application methods, and combination
possibilities like hybrid coatings.
The test lab has afforded TLT-Turbo engineers a deeper
understanding of the mechanisms behind wear and the effects of specialized
solutions. This has led to new approaches in product advancement and
development that are grounded in providing solutions that meet market
“The analysis of residues from plants has a great influence
on product development as we are making more informed decisions when choosing
materials for corrosive and abrasive environments,” says Baumgärtner.
This has also had an impact on TLT-Turbo’s aftermarket
service offering. The test lab, has allowed for new customer services can be
generated, such as the performance of specific tests for customers. “The development
of new solutions for specific customer problems is now much faster and more
accurate. Also the suitability of low cost approaches or solutions that allow
for wear induced damages to be repaired on-site integrate effortlessly into TLT-Turbo’s
existing solutions,” Groh concludes.
The test lab enables TLT to continuously improve their
solution portfolio for different customer problems with a focus on wear. The
combination of understanding the client’s exact requirements and challenges and
having a tool that allows engineers to find the best solutions from a
scientific basis are a key factor for success in the market and play an
important role for TLT-Turbo’s on-going product development and quality client
TLT-Turbo GmbH builds
radial and axial flow fans for virtually any application. First-rate
engineering, tradition and progress in air handling technology and a worldwide
support network have been the cornerstones of their excellent global renown as
a fan and systems manufacturer for more than 140 years. TLT-Turbo GmbH fans and
the associated system components are deployed successfully all over the globe.
To date over 10,000 fans have already been installed. Their subsidiaries,
branches and agencies span the globe including TLT-Turbo offices in Germany,
China, Austria, Russia, South Korea, USA, Chile, Hungary, Australia, India and