Thursday, September 14, 2023
BusinessScottish engineering business to have production boosted by digital upgrade

Scottish engineering business to have production boosted by digital upgrade

SCOTS engineering business, Omnitool, is set to have its production capacity boosted by a new digital upgrade.

Thanks to £188,000 of funding from Innovate UK, Omnitool are now working with the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) to implement a new upgrade that will boost production and aid expansion into new markets.

Irvine-based Omnitool provide precision engineering services to oil, gas, renewable and nuclear centres across the country.

The business hopes that its new digital upgrade will see machine idle time cut in half, with production capacity increased by 10%.

Two male engineers study machinery in a warehouse
Daniele Marini, NMIS and Mark McKell, Omnitool, anticipating a new digital upgrade.

Family run since 2005, Omnitool hope that by boosting its production capacity the company will be able to expand into new markets, create new jobs and reduce emissions.

The digital upgrade will see Omnitool implement offline programming techniques and train employees on coding skills.

Omnitool engineers will use digital twins, computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) to program machines offline – minimising disruption and increasing efficiency.

One of the most technically capable machining facilities in the UK, Omnitool recently invested over £2.5m in Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines to produce high-value products for a range of sectors, such as aerospace and energy.  

Mark McKell, operations director at Omnitool, said: “The previous online programming approach meant there was significant idle time while the machines were being set up, but this project allowed us to adopt a high-tech digital approach.

 “The increased capacity will enable us to grow the business and target new sectors such as aerospace.

“We’ll be using the new strategy to transform our entire manufacturing processes in the years ahead.”

 “Over the next three years, Omnitool hopes to gain the skills required across the company to introduce the new digital approach across 90% of its production centres and anticipates 10 new roles will be created as a result.

“As well as boosting capacity, the switch to offline programming will also have sustainable benefits for the company, helping to reduce waste and cut emissions by up to 12 tonnes of CO2e per year”.

Daniele Marini, supply chain and operational transformation lead at NMIS, added: “Omnitool has embraced the opportunity to integrate new digital processes.

By sharing the results of its transformation, alongside how-to guidelines, we hope to inspire other manufacturing businesses to unlock additional capacity in a similar way.”

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