A Professional Air Flow Laboratory
The A.R.I. air flow laboratory is unique (the only one of its kind in the region) and is designed for testing air valves. The air flow lab was designed and operates according to the ISO 17025 global standard and was adapted to meet the ISO 9001 quality standard and the ISO 14001 environmental standard. Bench test assessments are carried out according to worldwide testing standards as well as the European standard EN 1074. The initial calibration for the air flow lab was based on results from the CESAME (France) High Pressure Test Bench used for flow calibration and testing. This lab calibrates large diameter gas meters based on the principle of the ORIFICE PLATE.
The A.R.I. air flow laboratory performs assessments of air flow rates during intake and discharge, air flow tests for air valve premature closure as well as a vacuum bench test which tests the flow rate for air intake into air valves when the pipeline is under negative pressure.
These tests are carried out and calculated in accordance with international standards for moisture and temperature variables.
The air flow laboratory tests all types of air valves (air release, air & vacuum, combination, non-slam, one-way etc.) that operate on water and wastewater systems and are in the diameter range of 1/2" to 12".
The air flow laboratory employs 4 air storage tanks, each one with a volume capacity of 10 cubic meters, plus an additional 10 cubic meter air tank that is employed as the working tank.
The air is stored at 13 bar of pressure and enables testing of air valves up to 12" in diameter and, with an additional compressor, enables automatic air valves to be tested at a pressure of 16 bars.
The air flow laboratory is computerized; therefore, once the characteristics of the tested air valves are entered in the computer and the air valve is connected to the test bench, the test is run. At its conclusion, the test reports are immediately available on the computer without further processing.
The air flow lab is open to invited guests and trainees, who are able to view the testing and receive the results in real time, either viewed on a large screen or printed as a hard copy.
Applications Engineering Dept.
The main attributes of the A.R.I. Dept. of Applications Engineering are its professionalism and its commitment to the customer and to the engineers and consultants who serve these customers. They include the obligation to share knowledge with the customer as well as to train the market. The Applications engineering personnel have the ability to view the customers’ needs through their own eyes. They can provide the clients with professional guidance by understanding the special needs of each marketplace and supply applicable solutions.
Each applications engineer is assigned a geographical area and supports that area with hands-on guidance and with organized presentations and seminars. They travel extensively and provide their services on-site at the customer's facilities.
In addition, the dept. is well trained in providing solutions for pressure transients and surge problems in pipelines. Using the latest software, both ARIavCAD and Pipe 2010, the applications engineers can analyze the pipeline and provide the best solutions for reducing the damaging effects caused by these pressure and other hydraulic phenomena. They also provide data reports on the optimum placement and sizing of air valves on the pipeline.
The main benefits of these abovementioned solutions are lower energy costs, a decrease in corrosion, surges and pipe bursts and a reduction in pipeline fractures and cracking. These are the main causes for water loss and pathogen intrusion in the pipeline.
The applications engineering department also cooperates with numerous academic institutions worldwide by participating in research projects that develop a better understanding of water conveyance systems. A result has been the publication of numerous articles and research works documenting the results of these projects
The goal of the QA dept. is to ensure the quality and integrity of the work processes in A.R.I. and with its suppliers. A.R.I. has developed numerous specifications and procedures to ensure that the process from development, through receiving, production, assembly and the shipping of products and services all meet A.R.I. client needs and requirements.
1. QA procedures are carried at both at the supplier and at A.R.I. and in cooperation with the customer.
The A.R.I. QA staff supports the suppliers worldwide where it carries out inspections and provides training. This ensures that items supplied to A.R.I. will meet all specifications as defined by the engineering departments of A.R.I.
2. QA procedures in the support departments such as Procurement, Planning, R & D and Marketing.
The QA dept. oversees the compliance with established specifications and work procedures in accordance with market and product demands and ensures that the procedures are set forth and documented as required in the specifications and stored in the A.R.I. information systems.
3. QA procedures in the operational departments such as Receiving, Warehousing, Assembly, Machining and Shipping.
The QA dept. carries out inspections to ensure the integrity of the process and its adherence to written procedures and specifications as follows:
- Receiving and inspection of the materials supplied and their proper storage.
- Identification of parts and parts traceability in the warehouses.
- Product assembly according to the product specifications details.
- Product testing and packaging.
- Handling and documentation of process deviations and product rejections.
4. Quality Assurance is carried out by the QA staff at various levels:
- Qualified quality controllers at the different work stations.
- Periodic audits in the various departments.
- Initiating operations improvements and taking corrective actions at every occurrence of a product failure or a customer complaint. This includes a Materials Review Board (MRB) and a Customer Complaint Forum, both headed by the CEO of A.R.I.
Factory processes are examined and improved through computerized data collection and statistical reasoning, using test tools such as FMEA, etc. Customer information sharing is done through direct communications, structured questionnaires and periodic meetings throughout the product development stages.
The A.R.I. QA dept. is ISO 9001 certified since 2000 and ISO 14001 certified since 2009.
A Professional Coatings Factory
In early 2010, A.R.I opened up a new coatings factory for the fusion bonded coating process of all A.R.I products. The equipment was purchased specifically for the A.R.I. Coatings Factory. The technology and software components were specifically designed for the A.R.I product line.
The main processes performed at the coatings factory include:
- Preparation for painting - heating for the removal of gases, shot blasting and plugging of holes in the casting.
- Painting: heating, powder coating and oven curing.
The painting process is controlled by monitoring sensors that collect and transfer all conveyor operation data during the entire process. This data is transmitted to a central computerized controller that has the ability to control the process and change the operational regime of the system as need be. The data, collected real-time in the computer, controls and documents the whole process. At the end of coating process, a quality control process is initiated which includes visual inspection, testing of coating thickness, coating continuity, durability and adhesion testing.
The coating system is adapted to process castings of small, medium and large diameters and is able to customize the process to meet specific customer requirements for coating thickness. The shop operates on a schedule synchronized to meet required delivery dates as requested by A.R.I. The coatings factory and its coating materials are certified for use on products intended for potable water systems (NSF certification) and are supervised under the most stringent standards. The shop is also certified by the international standard ISO14000.