You wouldn’t think squeezing an extra half-gram of ointment into a two-gram tube would be such a big deal, but the 25% to 50% “giveaway” volume was costing a major pharmaceutical producer dearly. Recognizing that the problem was inherent in the tube filler design, the equipment engineer in charge sought the advice of an Expert Engine expert. A quick search put him in touch with an expert in metered pump applications involving high-viscosity fluids. After listening to the problem, he told the engineer about a metering pump manufacturer that could ensure precision filling within .03percent of the 2-gram allotment. The new meter was installed. Following initial debugging and optimization, the new meter led to a highly precise filling operation that is saving the company an estimated $1 million a year.
Engine clients report tremendous value in working with our experts to address their diverse needs for expertise. Our experts currently cover over 30,000 areas of expertise, and we are adding new experts and areas every day. Below are examples of the range of both Corporate Success and Legal Success you can achieve by taking the first step of submitting an expert request.
Engineers at a heart valve manufacturer overcame a seal problem by calling an Expert Engine expert in submarine technology. The solution led to a better, safer valve that reached the market three months early.
A maker of electro-optical controls for automated manufacturing needed a special adhesive to function as a sealant between two polymer layers in the formation of a new acrylic lens. Although the development team was composed of optics experts, they knew little about adhesives. Turning to Expert Engine, the team leader soon identified and contacted an adhesives expert. The expert reviewed selection criteria, provided advice and also referred the client to a second expert in the field. The input from two network scientists led to the selection of the ideal adhesive, enabling the team to develop and launch a successful new product line.
A researcher was devising a set of experiments to measure the effects of a chemical environment on product performance. Throughout this time-consuming task, he suspected it might be possible to generate the needed data with fewer tests. He contacted an Expert Engine expert specializing in experiment design and data analysis. After just two telephone conversations, the scientist was able to reduce the number of experiments by one-third. The expert also helped analyze early test results.
Engineers suspected the cause of an isolated thermal problem in the operation of a key piece of equipment, but they needed confirmation. They turned to Expert Engine to consult with an authority in fluid mechanics. Upon describing the situation, which involved an unusual reaction to thermal changes and decreasing flare control of gas, the expert was able to confirm their original theory. The successful interaction allowed the company’s engineers to quickly remedy the problem, saving time and money.
By talking to an Expert Engine expert, the technical director at a small defense contractor learned how to adapt his company’s specialized sensor technology to a commercial market. The call opened the door to bid on a $10 million project.
A designer and manufacturer of aluminum air-to-air heat exchangers for agricultural, industrial and residential applications needed to explore rust-resistant alternative materials that were less susceptible to rapid corrosion, yet could provide high levels of head exchange efficiency. The central question was: What are the heat transfer characteristics of the current product design and how will they change when different materials such as aluminum alloys, stainless steel and plastics are used in the heat exchanger plate? Over the phone, an Expert Engine expert from a major research university outlined the procedures needed to evaluate the heat transfer loss that could be attributed to each of the materials under consideration. Based on the evaluation, the company now uses three different materials in its heat exchangers and has strengthened it product line.
A company was developing a new oven to cure-dip deposited coatings on expanded metal. That process required a machine to control airflow and temperature. The design team was unsure of how to obtain accurate measurements of airflow and temperature and knew the solution would require a fair amount of guess work. Through Expert Engine, they contacted a world-class heat transfer expert whose knowledge and counsel minimized the guesswork and saved at least $50,000 in research and design time.
By consulting with two Expert Engine experts in the area of substituting plastic for metal, an engineer confirmed that plastics could replace steel components in his firm’s line of conveyer products. The conversion lowered unit costs by 15% and allowed for a wider range of design options.