Here’s the challenge: You have a 650,000-square-foot high-tech manufacturing facility encompassing three multi-level buildings, and twice a day your engineering and maintenance department must check each of the 45 gas-delivery pressure gauges spread throughout the vast manufacturing system. Moreover, when a manufacturing emergency occurs in some region of the facility, you need to get a technician to the scene as quickly as possible to address the problem.
The solution? The Segway® Personal Transporter (PT).
“I walk more than 6 miles a day conducting gauge checks throughout our integrated circuit manufacturing facility,” says Pat Salmans, a high-purity gas technician with Avago Technologies in Fort Collins. “It is my job to ensure that the proper mix of gases is being delivered at the proper pressures into the manufacturing environment. To accomplish this, I need to do a lot of walking. From my desk I take an elevator down to the east wing to monitor that equipment, then walk through a series of tunnels to other buildings for similar checks. I’ll typically cover several floors of all manufacturing buildings, and to do it on foot it takes more than 45 minutes.”
“With the Segway PT, the same process takes about 20 minutes – so I now have nearly an hour of extra time each day to address engineering and maintenance issues that always pop up,” says Salmans, “The maintenance and engineering department actually has two units – a Segway PT and a Segway XT. I use the Segway XT frequently because I am also often moving outdoors between buildings. We have front cargo bags on both units that I use to carry gear and my PDA on which I make my gas pressure notations. Also, we recently purchased another Segway PT that we share with the security department. They use it every day to conduct door and perimeter checks, and respond to security situations.”
Recently, Salmans found another unexpected but critical use for his department’s Segway PT. “I am a trained EMT and a member of our facility’s Emergency Medical Response Team. Recently we received a medical alarm from another area of our facility, so I grabbed a medical bag and oxygen bottle and jumped on the Segway PT. I was there very quickly – the first one on the scene – and began administering first aid. The Segway PT is perfect for this because I can now get anywhere in our facility in less than five minutes.”
In total, Avago owns three units and seven engineering technicians have been trained to ride and use them every day. According to Salmans, the devices have made his department more effective and responsive. “The Segway PT saves us time and makes us more productive. We spend less time moving to and from different areas, and more time doing our jobs. ”
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