Design of Structural Systems for Large-Scale Solar Panel Installations

December 13, 2013

SANDMARK Global, a diversified supplier of custom engineering services, is pleased to showcase a recently completed project: the successful design of structural systems for solar panel mounting.

Inquiries: Mark F. Bender, Principal Partner, (877) 684-5155

image-121 image-122 image-3a image-2a image-1a image-123SANDMARK Global, headquartered in Virginia USA, offers global sourcing solutions to Manufacturing and Product Development Companies with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. We help our customers lower costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by becoming a true partner in their business activities.

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Cordinate Measurement Machines to Accommodate Large Sized Parts

Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMM) are indispensable tools for ensuring the dimensional accuracy of precision manufactured products.  While most manufacturers and metrology service providers are able to accommodate small and medium sized parts, very few have the CMM capability for larger sized parts because of the high capital investment needed to procure and maintain CMMs able to measure large sized parts.

For some applications that don’t demand very high precision, portable CMM may be sufficient.  However, portable CMMs are not very accurate, topping out at 20-30 micron resolution across 1-2 metres.

cmm portable

Room-size CMMs can accommodate very large parts, and can measure to micron-level resolution across 1-2 metres.  SANDMARK has the capability to accommodate parts up to 3 metres (10 ft.) long.  Large, high precision parts need to be acclimated sufficiently to the temperature inside the CMM room before they can be mounted onto the measuring equipment.

cmm large 01 cmm large 02

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SANDMARK Begins Supplying Crankshafts for Automotive Air Compressors

December 12, 2013

SANDMARK Global, a diversified supplier of custom manufactured products, is now supplying crankshafts used in automotive air compressors.  Manufactured to demanding specifications as a direct replacement component, these crankshafts provide flawless performance at highly cost competitive prices.

Inquiries: Mark F. Bender, Principal Partner, (877) 684-5155

Replacement Crankshaft for Air Compressors used in Mass Transit Automobiles

SANDMARK Global, headquartered in Virginia USA, offers global sourcing solutions to Manufacturing and Product Development Companies with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. We help our customers lower costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by becoming a true partner in their business activities.

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SANDMARK Completes Supply of Electrical Substation Structure for Crescent Dunes Project

December 12, 2013, Richmond VA

SANDMARK Global, a diversified supplier of custom manufactured products, has successfully delivered electrical substation structure for the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project at Tonopah. This is a landmark Solar Thermal Power Generation project being constructed in Nevada.  More information about the project below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crescent_Dunes_Solar_Energy_Project

http://www.solarreserve.com/what-we-do/csp-projects/crescent-dunes/

The substation structure was fabricated to exacting specifications and prints supplied by the customer in record time of 8 weeks from start to finish, cementing our reputation as a reliable supplier of structural systems for substations, power transmission, and communication networks.

Inquiries: Mark F. Bender, Principal Partner, (877) 684-5155

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

Substation Structural Systems for Crescent Dunes Solar Power Project

SANDMARK Global, headquartered in Virginia USA, offers global sourcing solutions to Manufacturing and Product Development Companies with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. We help our customers lower costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by becoming a true partner in their business activities.

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What is NPTF, and What Gages are Required to Check this Thread Style?

When it comes to tapered pipe threads, most people are familiar with NPT (National Pipe Thread Taper), which is the common standard in the USA for ‘pipe’ joining applications.  Because of the taper in the threads, the NPT connection provides better ‘seal’ as the threaded mating parts are torqued.  ANSI B1.20.1 lists the requirements for NPT threads.

NPTF is a variant of NPT.  It stands for “National Pipe Thread Taper Fuel”.  NPTF provides a higher level of leak-free joint.  While the NPT is generally used in mechanical and low-pressure applications and calls for the use of teflon tape between the threads, the NPTF is meant for high heat, high pressure, and other mission critical applications, to be used without any tapes between the threads.  NPTF is also called “Dryseal Pipe Thread”.  ANSI B1.20.3 lists the requirements for NPTF threads.

Gages required to check NPTF threads are:

  • L1 and L2 ring gages for male thread
  • L1 and L3 plug gages for female thread

The L1 ring gage checks the first four threads and the L2 gage checks the fifth to seventh threads (in contrast, only the L1 gage is sufficient to check the NPT).

In addition, a higher class of NPTF (Class 2) threads requires checking of the thread using 2 additional gages: Crest Check Gage and Root Check Gage (ring type for the male and plug type for the female).

For tapered threads, there are no separate GO and NOGO gages.  The GO/NOGO gages apply to straight threads (NPS and NPSF).

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Manufacturing in Mexico – Promises and Possibilities

Mexico as a manufacturing destination seems like a no-brainer.  Sharing a long border with the world’s largest market (the United States), shared history and culture (increasingly), same time zone, and dramatically lower labor costs compared to US, Mexico has held great promise but failed to capitalize on these advantages.  Among a rather long list of challenges to success have been a government relatively unfriendly to manufacturing and capitalistic principles, social upheavals, lack of infrastructure and investments, corruption and inefficiencies are some of the major.  As a result, Mexico does not show up in the Top 10 desirable manufacturing destinations today.  Most experts predict that in the near future, we can expect no change in Mexico’s position.

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Global Manufacturing Competitiveness – Rankings Today and in 5 Years

Our April 6 post, Manufacturing Competitiveness Comparison: USA vs China vs India vs Mexico discussed competitiveness of countries SANDMARK operates in.  Deloitte’s report on 2013 global manufacturing competitiveness by country ranks our countries of interest as follows:
Rank #1: China
Rank #3: USA
Rank #4: India
Rank #12: Mexico

Their prediction for rankings of the same countries 5 years from now is as follows:

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Manufacturing Competitiveness Comparison: USA vs China vs India vs Mexico

Companies looking to manufacture their products need to ask themselves: which region of the world is the most competitive for producing their particular portfolio of products.  This is a critical question for any Company’s profitability and indeed its future viability.  The answer to this question may vary depending on the type of products, but frequently for American Companies, four countries are at the top for consideration: USA, China, India, and Mexico.

Being that we operate in all these four countries, we at SANDMARK have rated each of the four countries for competitiveness in a range of critical metrics.

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SANDMARK Supplies Critical Equipment for Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project at Tonopah

January 7, 2013, Richmond VA

SANDMARK Global, a leading supplier of custom manufactured products, has been awarded a contract to supply critical equipment for the Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project at Tonopah. This is a landmark Solar Thermal Power Generation project being constructed in Nevada, and slated for commissioning in 2013.  More information about the project below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crescent_Dunes_Solar_Energy_Project

http://www.solarreserve.com/what-we-do/csp-projects/crescent-dunes/

http://news.cnet.com/8301-11386_3-57373508-76/solar-tower-will-power-las-vegas-at-night/

SANDMARK is supplying Voltage Transformers from ABB , as well as the custom electrical substation components.

Inquiries: Mark F. Bender, Principal Partner, (877) 884-5155.

SANDMARK Global, headquartered in Virginia USA, offers global sourcing solutions to Manufacturing and Product Development Companies with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. We help our customers lower costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by becoming a true partner in their business activities.

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SANDMARK Completes Milestone in Supplying T12 to T5 Fluorescent Lamp Retrofit Kit Subassemblies

December 14, 2012, Richmond Virginia

SANDMARK Global‘s Contract Manufacturing Division is now supplying production quantities of Fluorescent Lamp Retrofit Kit sub-assemblies to our customer in the USA.  These retrofit kits convert inefficient T12 and T8 fluorescent lamp fixtures into highly efficient T5 lamp systems.

Our customer’s design incorporates patented plug-and-play retrofit capability requiring no wiring or even the need for hand tools, that stand apart from their competitors’ offerings.  The range of offerings of this product line include

  • T12 – T5 retrofit kits
  • T8 – T5 retrofit kits
  • High efficiency T5 electronic ballast kits
  • Delamp kits
  • Bridging kits

SANDMARK’s Ballast Products Portfolio

General Information on Fluorescent Lamp formats and Retrofitting:

http://www.appropedia.org/Linear_Flourescent_Retrofit_%28Upgrading_to_T8_from_T12%29

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluorescent-lamp_formats

Inquiries: Mark F. Bender, Principal Partner, (877) 884-5155.

SANDMARK Global, headquartered in Virginia USA, offers global sourcing solutions to Manufacturing and Product Development Companies with operations in North America, Europe and Asia. We help our customers lower costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by becoming a true partner in their business activities.

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Sheet Metal – Metric Gage Substitutions for Imperial Gage Sheets

In Asia, sheet metal stock is more commonly available in metric gage rather than imperial (used widely in the USA).  The following table lists the recommended substitutions for imperial gage sheets, when the available stock is metric.

Imperial Gauge Imperial in mm Metric Sheet mm
10 3.25 3.0
12 2.64 2.5
14 2.03 2.0
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Sheet Metal Thickness Tolerances

What range of tolerances can we expect from standard steel sheet stock used in sheet metal fabrication? The main cause of variability in sheet stock thickness: during the rolling process that produces the sheet stock, a certain amount of “bowing” occurs in the rollers. This results in the sheet being slightly thinner at the edges than at the center of the sheet.

Gage Nominal Max Min 36” sheet 48” sheet
10 0.1345 0.1405 0.1285 0.006 0.009
11 0.1196 0.1256 0.1136 0.005 0.007
12 0.1046 0.1106 0.0986 0.004 0.006
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Carbon Steel Grades Cross Index (Commercial Designations)

The following table is a list of carbon steels commonly used in industry, along with their alternate names and designations in their worldwide commercial use.

Material Code and Material Name Worldwide Commercial/Alternate Designations
1103, Carbon Steel T-1 T-1; T-1 Type A; T-1 Type B; USS T-1, T-1 Type A, T-1 Type B
1201, High Strength Steel 4130 4130; AISI 4130; SAE 4130; 4130H; UNS G41300, H41300
1203, High Strength Steel 4140 4140; AISI 4140; SAE 4140; 4140H; UNS G41400, J14046
1204, High Strength Steel 4330V 4330V; 4330; 4330 Mod; 4330V Mod; 4330V (Mod+Si); UNS J23260, K23080
1205, High Strength Steel 4335V Mod 4335V Mod; 4335 Mod; UNS K33517
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Machining of Very Large Shafts (Fabricated, Forged, or Cast)

SANDMARK has the capability to fabricate/forge/cast shafts of large diameter and Continue reading

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Metals and Materials Testing Capabilities

At SANDMARK, as part of our full contract manufacturing services, we offer the full range of materials testing, including mechanical testing and chemical analysis. All tests are conducted by NABL accredited labs, with globally accepted procedures. If you require specific and custom tests according to your specifications, we can readily accommodate them, please call with your requirements.

Mechanical Testing

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