CARY, N.C.—Lord Corp. is enlarging its operation to handle future growth in the oil and gas sector.
It plans to invest about $15 million to expand the firm's Cambridge Springs, Pa., plant another 18,000 square feet and an undisclosed amount to open a new office in Spring, Texas, located near Houston. The expansion will boost the size of the Cambridge Springs plant to 190,000 square feet.
Both facilities will support customers in energy-related segments, including downhole drilling, the firm said.
Construction on the Cambridge Springs addition has begun, and Lord expects the expanded section to be operational by the third quarter of 2015, according to Jonathan Owens, director of the firm's global gas and oil group.
Lord's investment in the plant also will cover the purchase of machinery and other equipment.
The addition likely will create 10 or more new jobs at the site over a three-year period.The plant currently has a work force of about 140 full-time production and management employees.
Plant to serve several functions
New production primarily will be for rubber-to-metal components. The plant also will be used for the assembly and testing of electromechanical parts for the oil and gas, industrial, and aerospace and defense markets.
The facility uses manufacturing processes for parts similar to those the company will produce for the oil and gas industry, which was an important factor in determining where the expansion would take place, the company said.
A 5,000-ton press that is 38 feet tall, 20 feet above ground and 18 feet below ground will serve as the centerpiece of the expanded operation, Owens said. The press will be used to manufacture large offshore elastomeric parts.
With the expansion, products for the oil and gas market will include elastomeric bearings for flexible joints needed for drilling and production risers; shock and vibration isolators for downhole electronics; drilling riser packers; diverter flex elements and seals; overshot seals; and other large offshore elastomeric parts, he said.
“We chose Cambridge Springs to locate this new production given the facility's proven track record of introducing new products to market and for alignment with current manufacturing processes and expertise,” said Eric Ravinowich, president of oil & gas and industrial equipment at Lord.
He said that, with a 90-year history and strong legacy in northwest Pennsylvania, the expansion is another positive step in its growth in the region.
New Texas office
The expansion is needed to accommodate the manufacturing capabilities that will be located at Cambridge Springs, particularly the large press, Owens said.
Lord's new office in Texas will support oil and gas customers in the Midwest and Southwest.
It chose the Houston area “to become more accessible to our oil and gas clients,” Owens said. “The location is key and will enable Lord to provide them with the service Lord is known for.”
Gregg Cune, global business development manager for downhole tool systems, will serve as office manager. He also will head the operation to identify opportunities to develop new parts and products for the downhole market, which will be available to customers around the world, the company said.
“We see a strong customer demand for innovative, risk-sharing design and production partners in the oil and gas supply chain,” Owens said. “We are excited about the opportunities and are making investments to serve our customers for the long term.”