Zeller+Gmelin Opens Test Lab

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Zeller+Gmelin Opens Test Lab
A new quality control laboratory at Zeller+Gmelin's facility in Germany includes a number of fume cupboards so that work with chemicals that are hazardous to health or have a strong smell can be carried out under optimum conditions. Photo courtesy of Zeller+Gmelin

German lubricant manufacturer Zeller+Gmelin last week said it fully opened a new high-tech quality control testing laboratory at its headquarters in Eislingen, Germany.

The opening was delayed for six months by the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff had been scheduled to occupy the facility in April, however all but a skeleton team were prevented from doing so.

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Although the severest period is over, the pandemic continues to chill activity across almost all economic sectors around the world, which at the beginning of the year forced many to work at home to reduce infection risk. The lubricants industry was not spared.

Demolition of a transmission oil tank farm in the third quarter of 2019 marked the start of construction in Zeller+Gmelin’s project, and the building’s shell was quickly completed before year-end. By March, internal fittings and systems had been installed, including a pneumatic tube for transporting 10,000 samples per year.

The specialist lubricant and chemicals company has been at the same location for more than 120 years. The existing lab occupied one of the oldest buildings on the site but was judged to be no longer fit for purpose, as working conditionscould not meet the requirements of a modern quality control laboratory, the company said.

“We see the new laboratory building as a future-oriented and trend-setting project that will provide new inspiration for our quality strategy,” Roland von der Recke, head of quality control, said in a press release.

In addition to the laboratory rooms for quality control, the company is setting up a separate quality control laboratory for lubricating greases in the immediate vicinity of its lubricating grease development area. Daniel Knospe, head of plant technology at Zeller+Gmelin, said in the press release that the premises are equipped with a generous number of fume cupboards allowing optimal handling of chemicals that are hazardous or malodorous. All workstations also have exhaust slots that continuously extract air from the laboratory benches, in addition to various connections for technical gases, ensuring that the extension of analytical determinations can be carried out at any time.

According to its website for its German business, Zeller+Gmelin’s makes industrial lubricants for a wide variety of applications, including construction, wire, forestry, wood paneling, automobile bodies, bearings, mechatronics, power tools, steel and aluminium and textile processing as well as a line of biobased lubes for hydraulic oils, greases and chainsaws. The company also makes lubricants for automobiles.

Earlier in the year, Zeller+Gmelin announced it had become carbon neutral.