Case Study: Panel design & Assembly for a semi customer

Customer: Semiconductor OEM | Industries: Semiconductor, Research and Development| Key services: Design, assembly, supply, warranty

Major semi firm meets tight deadline with help from Swagelok Northern California

With Assembly Solutions and big local inventory, customer gets panels just in time

At a major semiconductor manufacturer, the Research and Development Department was thriving. An expansion project was well underway when they hit an obstacle: they needed panel assemblies created, fast. If they couldn’t find a solution in time to meet the deadline, the department’s expansion would be halted.

Executives at the client company knew of Swagelok and Swagelok Northern California. From source to exhaust, Swagelok services and components are used throughout the semiconductor manufacturing process.

A customer under pressure

With their deadline looming, the client reached out to Swagelok Northern California with some urgent needs. For example:

  • How quickly could our engineers start helping on design?
  • Did we have the inventory to supply them right away?
  • Could we deliver ready to use panels, or just parts for them?
  • Would designing and building custom panels be expensive?

Quick response by dedicated team

Swagelok Northern California has a dedicated Swagelok Assembly Solutions Team in Fremont, California. They responded immediately, traveling to meet onsite with the client and learn more about the application.

Our engineers also reached out to additional contacts at the semiconductor manufacturer to listen carefully to needs, gather technical requirements information, and introduce the client’s research team to a new family of Swagelok components. They received:

  • As much time as they needed to discuss the solution
  • CAD drawing with piping and instrumentation diagram
  • Component selection and Bill of Materials
  • Bending, welding, and assembly by certified technicians
  • Testing and warranty of the assembly
  • Professional packaging and delivery

Big local inventory cuts turnaround time

The panel assembly in question required managing pressure coming out of a cylinder and traveling into a regulator. The line carried oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen at an ambient temperature. The gases started under a significant pressure of several thousand PSI from the cylinder, and needed to come from the regulator at roughly 40 PSI.

In Fremont, California, we keep about $12M worth of Swagelok components on hand, and can deliver on any of 600,000 individual part numbers for fittings, hoses, leak detectors, measurement devices, regulators, tubing, valves, welding systems, and more. 

Bearing in mind the pressing availability needed to complete the job immediately, our specialists assisted in the selection of the best components to meet the required technical requirements, including pressure regulators, PTFE-lined, stainless steel hoses, pressure gauges, and needle valves.

Delivering tested, warrantied assemblies

Even if this semi customer had only needed us to put an adapter on a valve or an end connection on a hose, we would have been proud to design, build, and warranty it. If you can think it, our Assembly Solutions Team can design it, draw it, build it, test it, and warranty it. 

In this case, our engineers helped the customer innovate while our procurement experts worked to accelerate production. Then our Swagelok-Certified Technicians leak-tested every assembly to meet the highest quality standards. And every panel provided was backed by the same Swagelok Limited Lifetime Warranty that customers receive with our individual parts.

The team also worked to build a plan for further growth, developing panels for future implementation when necessary—each with a single SKU to make ordering quick and easy.

Delivering return on investment

By choosing our assembly services, this customer lowered their risk in several areas, minimized up-front costs, and lowered cost of ownership.

  • They avoided costs related to procuring products through middle-man suppliers, inaccurate budgeting, scrap, and incompatible components. They also minimized their up-front costs by ensuring their panels were optimized to use the fewest possible parts.
  • They mimized longer term maintenance and replacement costs by ensuring their panels were designed to have the fewest potential leak points and were built using the highest quality components. And they increased reliability and performance by having Swagelok certified installers put the panels together and subject them to all needed testing before delivery.
  • They minimized their risk by opting for assemblies backed with the industry-leading Swagelok Limited Lifetime Warranty and extensive documentation. And they used human resources wisely and likely saved a lot of time by outsourcing the project to our fluid system experts. And they know Swagelok Northern California can be reached 24x7 for support.

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