The official inauguration of the construction and conversion project took place on Friday, 16 September 2016, in the presence of over 100 guests, journalists, clients and politicians.
The Thales plant in Ulm houses the business unit Electron Devices as part of Microwave & Imaging Subsystems. It is the world market leader in the manufacturing of travelling wave tubes (amplifiers for space/ground applications). Employees faced challenges like spread-out departments across the site and a production reaching its capacity limits with non-optimal process flows. In order to position the site for the future, the Ambition Boost performance initiative "Ulm Optimisation" was set up.
Lean upgrade of facilities and ideal position for the future
In summer 2014 the extensive restructuring began. The inner courtyard hall was converted into a modern production site and the renovation of the existing wing; all administrative departments are located in one sole wing of the reputable industry building.
The total modified area for the entire project amounts to approx. 14,000 m².
• 5,000 m² highly modern production areas incl. 650 m² clean room;
• 600 m² laboratories;
• 3,400 m² office area for administration and development;
• 1,500 m² technical area.
Development, administration and production processes have been significantly simplified. The process-optimised layout in the production area allows treating production demands more efficiently. In the first months internal transport times have been reduced by 40%.
As a result of reduction of energy and maintenance costs, there are positive effects for competitiveness as well as increased efficiency and structure in line with lean principles. Thales invested heavily in the increase of competitiveness and the creation of growth capacities. The landlord also invested in the laboratories, offices and a new multi-storey car park, making the location more attractive for employees today and in the future.
“The site Ulm is of particular importance not only for Thales Deutschland, but also for the whole Thales Group, for which we act as an international center for aerospace components and subsystems”, explains Dr. Christoph Hoppe, CEO and Chairman of the Management Board Thales Deutschland.