Barry Jason, President
With each year bringing in new innovations, companies in the manufacturing industry have always sought after efficiency in their manufacturing floors to have the upper hand over their competitors. But one inverter manufacturer seems to have them beat, with the capability to build a 125 Watt, 12 Volt inverter as well as a 2 Kilowatt, 108 Volt DC input inverter on the same product line and production facility while being able to change from one to the other in a matter of minutes. It makes one wonder what company can possibly manage this level of production efficiency.
The company in question here is EXELTECH, powering the inverter market with its family of lightweight, high-performance inverters. EXELTECH builds modular inverters where customers can insert several modules into a chassis, and consequently achieve higher power levels, more flexibility, and N plus one (N+1) redundancy. The company was founded on the philosophy that “the efficiencies in the manufacturing process through product design coordinated with facility layout are paramount to productivity, and the key to the quality and the worth of the product.” During the company’s initial development, the EXELTECH team designed its family of inverters and the production facility simultaneously, to be able to build their variety of products on the same production line at all times.
As a result, EXELTECH is able to supply their inverters for a wide variety of applications where customers can request a semi-custom built inverter with as low as 125 Watts in power to as much as 60 Kilowatts or higher. And designing the inverters requires no tear downs or setups for machines. “All we have to do is download a new pick-and-place program into the machine, and off we go,” says Barry Jason, President of EXELTECH. “The pick-and-place parts and the bulk ordering methods that we use have the lowest parts per million defect rate from the operation of the entire facility,” he adds.
For over two decades now, the company has been shipping the 1 Kilowatt inverter module, a customer favorite because of the years of reliability that EXELTECH has demonstrated.
The pick-and-place parts and the bulk ordering methods that we use have the lowest parts per million defect rate from the operation of the entire facility
Their newest products, the 2 Kilowatt modules, are targeted for the same high-reliability markets. What’s different is that the 2 Kilowatt modules allow EXELTECH to build much higher power levels than is inherently practical with a 1 Kilowatt module, enabling them to go after higher power applications. And as specified by some of their customers, the company added various security features such as solid-state transfer switches, system monitoring in terms of an alarm card that has features of Ethernet coupling.
As a TL9000 certified company, EXELTECH has a quality system that triggers the “new product introduction” process anytime a customer calls the company asking them to design, build, or ship them an inverter that is not already in the system. The design process is a closed loop system where EXELTECH takes a look at the customer requirements document and proposes a design for the inverter. The company then generates the factory build information, new schematics, and everything else that’s required.
Interestingly, one of their customers was NASA, who came with an extra set of requirements that they wanted added to one of EXELTECH’s standard inverters for their international space station. EXELTECH immersed themselves into a multiyear design process with NASA with multiple discussions on how to meet the requirements that NASA put forward. They were partners all along the way, and in the end, it worked out great for NASA. The final designed inverter helped NASA launch power various pieces of equipment that otherwise would have had to be specifically designed for space use. “We have set up our factory to customize every product that we build to the unique specifications that a customer may have,” says Kevin Parsons, Vice President of EXELTECH.
As their main product family has a history of making customers happy for over two decades, the company has no real plans to change that. But at the same time, with everybody out there wanting to achieve just as good quality, “We’re getting denser, better offerings for the customer, and doing it with the same quality level that we’ve learned over 25 years,” says Parsons. “That’s how we address the markets’ need for clean, reliable, and more power.”