An industry-institute interactive meet was held in Hubli in July, 2016. The industrial valve cluster in Hubli is a heterogeneous mix of both low-end valve manufactures and high-end valve manufactures. While some 3-4 units may have high-end equipment for machining, testing etc., the majority seems to lack such facilities.
Technology-wise, the following areas require immediate attention for up-gradation:
- Manual intervention at different stages of the production process is found to be the single major detrimental factor affecting quality and reliability of the industrial valves.
- In the manufacturing process, casting technology requires up-gradation.
- Similarly, forging technology for manufacture of high-end valves require R&D support from national laboratory / academia.
- Surface finishing is a major concern for the cluster, specifically from the international market view point.
- The cluster has specifically requested for access to a pool of technology experts from academia and R&D agencies of the country.
Immediate R&D Interventions being undertaken
The existing common facility centre (CFC) set-up for the auto component cluster (Hubli-Dharwad) has equipment that are useful for industrial valve units. The option of the CFC being formally thrown open for access by the industrial valve cluster is under consideration. Alternatively, the industrial valve cluster will make a proposal to set up an exclusive CFC for itself. The detailed project report (DPR) in this context is being prepared by the valve cluster unit.
For sensitizing ant training the supervisory level shop-floor personnel on using advanced equipment and enhance automation level, an E-classroom is being implemented. The course contents are being developed jointly with scientists/experts from BACE, L&T Valves, BHEL and IIT Gandhinagar. The course will be finalized as per the demands of the industrial valve cluster. IIT Bombay has agreed to implement the online course. A Hubli based engineering college is expected to provide facility for access to the E-Classroom.