Johnson Controls Adds Automation Equipment to Oklahoma HVAC Plant


Johnson Controls Adds Automation Equipment to Oklahoma HVAC Plant

To increase capacity and improve assembly productivity at its 900,000 square foot factory in Norman, OK, Johnson Controls invested $7.5 million in new automation equipment.

Last month, Johnson Controls made a major $7.5 million investment in new automation equipment at its commercial HVAC manufacturing facility in Norman, OK. The new equipment will increase capacity, while improving product quality, safety and assembly productivity at the 900,000 square foot facility, known as the Johnson Controls Rooftop Center of Excellence.

“Johnson Controls is committed to exceeding our customers’ expectations through continuous improvement in our manufacturing facilities and investment in our product lines,” said Doug Schuster, vice president and general manager, Global Ducted. Systems, Johnson Controls. “We continue to invest in Norman’s plant improvement activities to modernize and expand the plant, automate the manufacturing process, improve the safety of our employees and ensure that our products are manufactured to quality standards. as high as possible.”

Johnson Controls’ 900,000 square foot factory in Norman, OK, includes seven new automation devices to increase capacity and improve assembly productivity.

The new automation equipment includes the following:

  • Punch and roll forming machine: A new punching and profiling machine will produce all base rails, from coils to finished product, in one process, supporting both Select and Premier commercial roof units. This all-in-one machine will take approximately 45 seconds of cycle time per rail, resulting in productivity gains and reduced material handling, while providing operators with an ergonomic process for manufacturing rails. The machine also has kitting capabilities, which increases speed and reduces human error.
  • Robotic press brakes: Three new robotic press brakes have been installed on the site. Each machine’s robotic arm moves parts to and from the breaking press before being placed on an outfeed conveyor. Three of these machines can be operated by a single operator, resulting in productivity gains, improved quality and repeatability.
  • Turret laser machines: Two new turret laser machines will punch and cut sheet metal for three newly installed assembly lines. Each machine includes an eight-shelf loader for raw materials and finished parts, a 220-tool automatic tool changer and a parts sorter. These machines will support growth plans by increasing capacity, redundant laser cutting process and improving sorting productivity.
  • Automatic brazer: The new automatic brazer will increase production of finned and tube coils for large rooftop units and accommodate new coil lengths introduced on future products.

The new equipment will increase facility capacity and streamline the manufacturing process, making employee jobs safer and more efficient, but jobs will not be affected.

The most notable expansion of the 50-year-old Norman facility took place in April 2019. It now includes nearly 400,000 square feet of additional laboratory and manufacturing space, which includes a test lab two stories high and 52 feet high about the size of a football field and a half. The extensive laboratory allows Johnson Controls to perform development, regulatory compliance, performance, safety and reliability testing on site, including the ability to test a 150 ton rooftop unit in climates ranging from -30 °F to 130°F. The 2019 expansion also included renovations of over 150,000 square feet of office and meeting space. Today, the plant manufactures commercial HVAC systems for the Johnson Controls, YORK®, TempMaster®, Luxaire®, Coleman® and Champion® brands.

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