Photo: Rüdiger Kroh

LifetimeSolutions: the right services on the right time

The focus of the new service concept is on one hand on concrete customer needs, and on the other hand on the three stages of the machine life cycle: start-up, production, modernization.

From left: Frank Geiselhart, Director Global Service CHIRON, Alexander Dörner, Head of Service STAMA and Frank Egidi, Manager Service SCHERER

The extensive knowledge of CHIRON, STAMA and SCHERER about these phases forms the basis of LifetimeSolutions: How does the machine behave with progressive age? Which production-specific specifications must it fulfil when? With LifetimeSolutions, the service specialists develop a precisely coordinated strategy, can provide even more targeted support than before, and offer suitable products and services at an early stage.

Learn more:

For more information, see the article NC-Fertigung Topic of the Week 8/2020 (german) and our Website or the new service brochure.

Welcome to the future: CHIRON Precision Factory

»With the new Precision Factory, CHIRON has clearly proven that it is actively pursuing the challenges of the 21st century,« according to Dr. Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut MdL, Minister for Economics, Labor and Housing for Baden-Württemberg, in her speech at the opening ceremony.


The minister continued: »That's because this factory combines the very best that our machine tool industry in Baden-Württemberg has to offer: Machines which combine the highest productivity with the highest precision and thereby set standards for the digital age.«

Unique factory for unique machines

Since August 2019, the CHIRON Precision Factory, the biggest single investment in the company's history at EUR 34.5 million, has been offering the best and, above all, very stable framework conditions for the construction of up to 400 machining centers per year. Currently, CHIRON's tried-and-tested series 15 and 18 as well as the two new series 16 and 25 are being produced in Neuhausen ob Eck. Assembly of series 22 will begin soon. This new series is ideally suited to the precise, dynamic machining of large components in the automotive and precision mechanics industries.

Optimized assembly and logistics processes for shorter delivery times

The machining centers that are constructed in the CHIRON Precision Factory are not only characterized by maximum precision, but also by faster availability. The machines are produced in a cluster assembly process – one team, one machine – in shorter cycles. For each order, the optimized processing saves about two to three weeks of time, so that customers can get started with production sooner. And better too, thanks to advance simulation of processes: All machining which is later carried out on the machine can be programmed, simulated and optimized right in the Precision Factory.

CHIRON campus at the Neuhausen plant

The fact that CHIRON has accepted and understood the challenges of the future is clear not only from the Precision Factory itself, but also by the way in which it was achieved. It took just 15 months from the ground-breaking ceremony to the official opening. The pioneering project was successfully completed within the specified time frame and budget.

The also new central logistics department at the Neuhausen plant combines the CHIRON Precision Factory with the existing assembly halls to form a CHIRON campus.

»We counteracted the currently difficult market situation with state-of-the-art machines and increased productivity. We therefore remain competitive in the long term and can further expand our position in the current growth sectors of aerospace and medical engineering.«
Bernd Hilgarth
Sales Director at CHIRON

The CHIRON Precision Factory in full swing

CHIRON Precision Factory - Facts

Construction time

July 2018 to September 2019 (ready for occupancy)

Key building data

  • Capacity: Maximum of 400 machines per annum
  • Production area: 9,000 m²
  • Logistics area: 2,500 m²
  • Office area: 2,200 m²
  • Total area of the new building: 13,700 m²
  • Total existing space: 17,000 m²

Layout

  • Optimal material flow configuration with logistics spine for all flows of people and materials
  • Centralized final assemblies, engineering offices and logistics areas
  • Central order picking of machines and systems

Building services engineering

  • Concrete core activation for even and exact temperature control
  • Use of waste heat from machines
  • Ventilation systems with heat recovery
  • LED lighting
  • Total energy consumption 70 kWh per m² and per annum

Digitalization

  • Smart Factory Cockpit: Control of air-conditioning, lighting and camera systems
  • Digital assistance systems in assembly
  • Contactless logistics bookings
  • Digital quality testing and assurance ("digital fingerprint")
Photo: Matthias Keller

The best view comes after the hardest climb.

Matthias Keller, Head of Technical Application at CHIRON, is convinced: To be successful, you need a positive attitude, a strong team by your side and the willingness to do more. And that's also how he approaches his sporting career as a snowboarder on the German paralympic A-squad.

Mr Keller, you completed your apprenticeship as an industrial mechanic in equipment and precision engineering in 1998 and have been Technical Application Manager since 2019. You have also been a para snowboarder since 2017. Are there any similarities between being a manager and being a snowboarder?

Certainly, there are a lot: It is always good to keep a clear head – whether in your everyday job, at the World Cup or when touring. I always take a considered approach and examine the facts carefully. I think that this is the only way of making sound and correct decisions. Anything else, whether on my own in the outdoors or as a manager with responsibility for my team, would be rather negligent.

How would you describe your role as a manager? What do you consider to be particularly important and who do you take your inspiration from?

Loyalty, treating one another fairly and having an excellent team spirit. That's the example my former manager set every day, and that's what I'm trying to continue. I also see myself as a "guide", steering everything and everyone in the right direction, so that we achieve success. I also find it important for each person to identify with his or her tasks and to approach new challenges with a positive attitude.

Your motto is "The best view comes after the hardest climb." Can you explain this in more detail?

Well, I had a serious motorcycle accident and had to have my lower leg amputated. Dealing with this was and is a big challenge and changed a lot of things for me. But now I know what you can achieve if you follow your goals consistently. And that also motivates me as a manager. I don't see difficulties, just new opportunities.

One of these possibilities outside of CHIRON has been snowboarding in the German Paralympic team. What are your sporting aims? 

Competition is strong, and with some countries investing a lot of money, the majority of athletes are professionals. Team Germany was only formed after the last Paralympics. Our budget is very small and all our athletes and assistants are in employment, so we only take part in individual races. But we still want to be at the front of the field, perhaps achieving a place in the top 10. And of course we all want to go to Beijing for the Paralympics 2022.

Para Snowboard

Matthias Keller starts in the Lower Limb 2 class in two disciplines: Snowboard-cross (SBX) and banked slalom.

In SBX, each athlete first descends on their own against the clock, then, from the last sixteen onward, it is head to head. The course includes racing and freestyle elements. In the banked slalom, the snowboarders descend slopes with gradients of up to 35 percent on a course prepared with steep turns. All participants compete twice against the clock, the quickest run counting.

How do you juggle training, a job and your private life? It sounds like a sport in itself!

I prioritize and focus on the essential. Everyday work is intensive, for sure, but sport is a perfect balance for me. I see every task facing me as a chance to improve.

What motivates you other than your sporty approach?

Life itself is the greatest motivation. There are so many beautiful moments that I have worked towards again after the amputation. For example, the feeling of standing on top of a mountain – indescribable! The climb may be tough, but it is always worth it. Every day has the potential to be a good day. In sport, at home and at work.

For more information on the German Para Snowboard Team:

https://www.teamdeutschland-paralympics.de/de/athleten.html

 Matthias Keller in competition mode at the World Cup. Image: Luc Percival Photography
Matthias Keller in competition mode at the World Cup. Image: Luc Percival Photography

Career summary

1998    Completed training as an Industrial Mechanic at CHIRON as best in the year

2001    Employee in Manufacturing

2003    National service with the German Red Cross

2004    Application Engineer in Applications at CHIRON

2008    Application Engineering Team Leader

2015    Application Engineering Manager

2019    Application Manager

Photo: © de.signbar

Thumbs up for many followers!

And there are more every day: After nearly two years, the CHIRON Group's "fan club" on LinkedIn now has more than 3,500 followers and is fast approaching 4,000.

Every day, more and more LinkedIn users take the opportunity to access fast, compact and highly topical information about trade fairs and events, the CHIRON Group, the activities of the companies and representations worldwide, training and careers. And of course news about products and services.

For example, information about the new series 22, which recently became the focus of a social media campaign. Those involved in the project give insights into the personal experiences and challenges they faced during the development process.

Do you like what we post on LinkedIn? Then speak to us and about us, rate the articles, comment on them – we want to know what you think.

Do you want to be part of our network? Simply "tick" to follow us: LinkedIn:

And brand new: Since February, you can also find us on Instagram: Instagram: