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Cooper-Standard Automotive

ITT Industries Rely on Quality of CAQ AG

ITT Fulton-Rohr GmbH in Hockenheim, a subsidiary of the large US company ITT Industries, belongs to a successful worldwide conglomerate. This company, located in Southern Germany, was integrated into the corporation in 1996, and is, in addition to its sister companies in Germany, France, the Czech Republic, Spain, and the US, active in the area of fluid handling systems (FHS).

This manufacturer, located in Hockenheim, specializes in the transport of fluids in the automotive manufacturing industry. The company, which employs a workforce of 350, utilizes a production line that operates on a 24-hour rotating shift system, continually manufacturing conduits for automotive brakes as well as for state-of-the-art ESP (electronic stabilization program) systems.

Pipes and conduits of 32 m are produced and soldered out of copper-plated steel which must show a pressure resistance of at least 1,100 bar. Form, length, and diameter of individual conduits are as variable as are individual demands of the various automobile manufacturers which make up ITT’s customer base. The longest component measures an impressive 4.5 m while the shortest only measures 91 mm.

The ends of pipes receive a plastic coating to prevent corrosion and protect against falling rocks. They also receive a flange and appropriate threaded pieces. Subsequently, sister companies in France and Germany use computer-accurate molding of individual cables/pipes that allow the pieces to be used by automobile manufacturers in future systems dealing with fuel, brakes, and ESP.

Safety through Quality

Automobile manufacturers are notorious for having the highest quality demands. Strict parameters allow for only minimal variances so that the products correspond with existing safety criteria.

Demands on internal company quality results as well as the external high quality demands of the automotive manufacturing sector create the basis for ITT’s exaggerated quality principles. At ITT, Wolfgang Mühlbauer is responsible for adherence to these quality standards. He has been relying on the performance of CAQ AG Factory Systems software for his experience with quality management systems and QMB for seven years now. Two years ago, he joined ITT and brought with him his choice in software for quality assurance.

“CAQ AG had been the choice software for me for five years already. Of course it was the natural thing for me to do to continue using this software at ITT,” explains the quality expert.

For Wolfgang Mühlbauer, price and performance are in excellent proportions with the CAQ quality assurance software. In addition to sales experts, there is always a personal technical expert available to assist him and which offers support even when it comes to, often last-minute, emergencies. Mr. Mühlbauer also emphasizes CAQ AG’s fairness when it comes to its product support as was the case when CAQ removed, free of charge and no questions asked, an already integrated software module from ITT’s system when it became clear that the module could not yet be integrated into the existing system peripherals.

Modular Architecture

When Mühlbauer speaks about his quality assurance system, one thing becomes clear: Here is an expert at work! He shows off with ease the individual modules which are in charge of maintaining the necessary quality at ITT. Licenses for Compact.Net, used in planning, inspections, and evaluation of quality are implemented here. “[In addition, there are licenses for] APQP/QVP, QBD.Net, REM.Net, QAM.Net, EMP.Net, FMEA.Net, PMM.Net, and Form.Net,” enumerates the quality expert, without forgetting to mention the specific characteristics and individual adjustments of distinct modules. Mühlbauer explains his extensive knowledge with a certain nonchalance: “If I don’t know what I am doing, it can have terrible repercussions.”

Mühlbauer especially values the planning components (family components) included in APQP/QVP. The component structure offered by CAQ AG offers him the option of inspecting individual production stages of a variety of components in one procedure. “In our company, the end product is derived from combining many individual parts. If I can change, for example, the measurements of a rim – which is, after all the same for 60% of our components – in one run, then this will save a lot of time and money.”

Wolfgang Mühlbauer, the supervisor for quality management at ITT Fulton-Rohr GmbH &Co. KG, is responsible for adherence to strict quality criteria. As a supplier of accessories for highly sensitive brake technology for the automotive industry, quality represents the foundation for the company’s success. ITT trusts CAQ AG’s products when it comes to quality inspections.

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