Atlas Copco: Forward Thinking

Atlas Copco is making fresh inroads in infra development with the launch of a LED light tower and a dual pressure compressor. Nitin Lall, GM - Power Equipment, Atlas Copco India, in an interview with Maria R, elaborates on the company's R&D for product development and upgradation of their product portfolio, keeping in mind the product gaps and future challenges.

Nitin Lall
Which sectors are driving demand of Atlas Copco products?

Roads, metro rails, bridges, rail corridors, large warehousing complexes, airports, broadband connectivity projects and similar infrastructure projects are driving the growth in India. Expectations from the Indian market is focused on contributing to Indian infrastructure projects by offering products which meet our customer's needs and ensures them long term benefits.

Atlas Copco Power Technique's focus is to have a sustained profitable growth in India. Undoubtedly, the road segment is where power equipment, such as portable air compressors and light towers are most in demand when we focus on infrastructure specifically.

Atlas Copco also plays a pivotal role in the irrigation segment to provide water for drinking needs where our portable compressors are successfully deployed in large irrigation projects. We contribute to this segment in a big way with our advanced waterwell compressors. Atlas Copco develops, manufactures and markets a wide range of world-class compressors with advanced technology suited for the waterwell drilling segment.

What has been the market response to your recently launched LED light tower and dual pressure compressor?

Our recently launched HiLight V5+ LED light tower is being actively deployed in key infrastructure projects from roads to windmill installation to metro projects. It offers advanced LED solutions and is the safest and most efficient light tower for road construction, airports, hydro power projects, mining and construction applications.

As India's 1st CPCB II–compliant light tower for the entire unit with fuel savings up to 50%, the demand for LED technology vis-a-vis metal halide technology is proving to be a great innovative and energy-efficient solution in light towers.

Our XRHS650 dual pressure compressor has demonstrated breakthrough technology for shallow water drilling, making Atlas Copco the only manufacturer to provide 300 psi in this small footprint class, with the option of dual pressure with higher flow. This has indeed proved to be an ideal upgrade for customers who want the dual benefit of higher pressure and higher flow in the shallow water well drilling segment.

Please describe the technology used in your portable compressor.

Atlas Copco
Atlas Copco products are designed and developed for Indian job site conditions, so we do various innovations through re-engineering. Sustainable productivity and safety are guaranteed features in all our machines and are non-negotiable. We believe in consistently upgrading our product portfolio, keeping in mind the product gaps and future challenges.

The element, which is the heart of the compressor, is engineered to the highest standards. All Atlas Copco portable air compressors are New-Gen screw elements, which are energy-efficient and engineered to power the best. To prove this, the change of element in our XRH1100 resulted in a new capacity of 1200 cfm and higher pressure to increase penetration without any additional load.

Similarly, the XRHS650/250-300 dual pressure compressor has the most advanced technology with maximum pressure in this range, by reducing the load with a 2-stage screw element design. This enhances its productivity and fuel efficiency.

What telematics solutions are being offered by Atlas Copco?

Digitalization is the new buzzword, and we, at Atlas Copco, focus on bringing in unmatched service with a strong digital footprint. We are complementing the traditional way of service engineers monitoring the health of the machine with advanced digital systems like Fleet Link.

Fleet Link is a connectivity (telematics) solution which represents all relevant operational and service information of connected machines on the website and dashboards. It offers remote insights in the vital stats of our customers' portable air compressors on site. Further, our latest dealer management software ensures maximum equipment uptime.

What is Atlas Copco's investment in R&D for developing innovative products?

Atlas Copco
Atlas Copco is a big investor in R&D in India. As leaders in innovation, we focus on localization and developing new technology. We cannot ignore that customers are also scaling up in terms of quality and service expectations, and we will continue to provide them with the time-tested Atlas Copco technology.

In 2013, Atlas Copco invested in a greenfield state-of-the-art manufacturing facility at Chakan, Pune, with an eye on our future growth in the country. The plant is three times the size of our old facility at Dapodi, Pune, and can meet our immediate as well as future demands, both locally and for some overseas markets. The Chakan plant will be utilized in the future for our indigenization projects for generators and pumps.

The challenge lies in investing in the right technology at the right time when the market is ready for the product. For our XRHS650 dual pressure compressor, the newest addition to LP range / medium air range for shallow water well drilling, we designed a compressor which had first time features, such as 38% smaller footprint, 20% faster and deeper drilling, 36% lighter than other compressors in its class, while ensuring better fuel economy and less load on the engine with 2 stage element design in the segment and dual pressure selection. This breakthrough compressor is now the driving force in this segment.

How is your export business growing, especially in the Southeast Asian markets?

Our export markets such as Middle-East, Africa, and far East have similar infrastructure projects which are driving the growth in these markets. We expect a healthy growth trend in infrastructure needs to continue to boost demand from export markets.

NBM&CW August 2018

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