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LAUDA is building a new facility for the production of circulation chillers in Spain for 7 million euros
On 20 January 2011, i.e. 10 years ago, LAUDA, the world market leader in temperature control equipment and systems, acquired a plant for industrial circulation chillers in Terrassa near Barcelona, Spain. Owing to the continuous positive development of the Spanish subsidiary, the temperature control specialist was able to celebrate the laying of the foundation stone for a new production facility there at the beginning of the year. The new building of LAUDA's subsidiary LAUDA Ultracool, SL will more than double the production capacity of LAUDA circulation chillers to meet the growing global demand for energy-efficient temperature control solutions. For LAUDA, this is not only the first construction project abroad in the company's 65-year history but also the first complete new building "on a greenfield site". Around 4,000 m² of new production space and more than 850 m² of office space will be created on a 9,000 m² site in the direct vicinity of the existing company headquarters. The Spanish sales company LAUDA Ibérica Soluciones Técnicas will also move into the new building.
LAUDA will manufacture industrial circulation chillers on the new site. LAUDA is investing around 7 million euros in the new building in Spain. Completion is scheduled for the 4th quarter of 2021. Xavier Armengol, Managing Director of LAUDA Ultracool, is proud of the new building: "LAUDA Ultracool will have significantly more space to integrate research and development and production capacities on the new site." The LAUDA Group's investment in these turbulent times was also a strong signal of confidence in the subsidiary and its employees.
The laying of the foundation stone, which took place on 14 January 2021 under strict hygiene conditions without representatives of the parent company, was attended by the management of LAUDA Ultracool, together with the deputy mayor of Terrassa, Ms. Nuria Marín, and high-ranking representatives of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Services. A time capsule containing local newspapers, a LAUDA complete brochure, sketches of the building, euro coins and a document with employee signatures was placed in the foundation during the ceremony,.
"The new building in Terrassa in the direct vicinity of the megacity of Barcelona has great significance for us," said Dr. Marc Stricker, COO of LAUDA. He noted that the demand for energy-efficient industrial cooling was constantly increasing, e.g. in applications such as the cooling of laser cutting machines or industrial printing machines. "The new building and the possibilities it creates will enable us to meet this demand and continue to drive the future viability of industrial temperature control technology forward at the same time. In this respect, LAUDA Ultracool is playing a leading role in the development of the connection of industrial circulation chillers to the LAUDA Cloud." Constant temperature equipment such as the Ultracool industrial circulation chillers can be monitored and controlled on a decentralized basis via the LAUDA Cloud. Access to the historical data of every device in the LAUDA Cloud also enables predictive and preventive maintenance. President and CEO, Dr. Gunther Wobser added: "Our fantastic success story in Catalonia shows that LAUDA is not only growing steadily at home but all over the world. Of the total of five production sites, three are located abroad; in China and the USA in addition to Spain. This means we are close to customers in dynamic industries such as electromobility and bioproduction, which includes vaccine manufacturing."
LAUDA presents Versafreeze ultra-freezers for the safe storage of vaccines and valuable samples
LAUDA, the world market leader in temperature control equipment and systems, is expanding its portfolio with the new LAUDA Versafreeze product line. This consists of high-quality ultra-freezers which have been optimized for the extreme requirements of deep-freeze storage. LAUDA thereby meets the requirements of vaccine producers, pharmaceutical service providers, vaccination centers and universities for the safe storage of temperature-sensitive corona vaccines and valuable medicines, chemical substances or biological samples. With a temperature range from 0 to -85 °C, LAUDA Versafreeze ultra-freezers provide state-of-the-art refrigeration technology, excellent insulating properties and the greatest possible protection, thanks to password-protected access rights and secure monitoring via the LAUDA Cloud.
Deep-freeze appliances with cutting-edge insulation technology
LAUDA Versafreeze freezer cabinets and chest freezers use a combination of vacuum insulation panels, thermofoil and diffusion-resistant foamed polyurethane insulation to protect against warming. This high-grade combination enables economical energy consumption, an excellent temperature homogeneity and consistency as well as short pull-down and maximum warm-up times. The insulation is also thinner with the same or even improved properties, leaving more space for the chamber. In the design, LAUDA relies uncompromisingly on components of the highest quality, such as vacuum panels from va-Q-tec, compressors from Embraco or controllers from Störk. After all, quality and reliability - and therefore the safety of valuable samples - are LAUDA's top priorities for its deep-freeze appliances.
In addition to this, LAUDA stands for continuity. As early as 2008, LAUDA-GFL was the first manufacturer in the world to set standards in the storage of sensitive pharmaceuticals by using efficient and natural refrigerants in ultra-freezers. Today, the use of sustainable refrigeration technology remains an essential component of LAUDA Versafreeze ultra-freezers.
Safe storage of valuable and sensitive materials
LAUDA Versafreeze deep-freeze appliances offer maximum sample reliability even in the event of a power failure, thanks to long thawing times. The integrated accumulator is a standard feature and ensures that the actual temperature display and alarm functions are maintained for a period of up to 60 hours. Locking systems right through to the individual drawer and inner compartment protect high-value and critical samples against tampering and access. New features of the Versafreeze deep-freeze appliances also include operation via an intuitive, modern touch display with a wide range of setting options, password-protected access rights and secure monitoring via the LAUDA Cloud. This allows critical values of the ultra-freezers to be checked and controlled independently of the location and appliance.
LAUDA Versafreeze can be optionally equipped with a safety cooling system for added safety. These systems protect against an uncontrolled temperature increase by keeping the chamber temperature constant at a freely definable value (-70 to 0 °C) through the controlled addition of LN2 or CO2 in the event of a failure of the appliance cooling system. LAUDA Versafreeze are available with safety cooling systems for either CO2 or LN2 coolants. LN2 is always used when the stored materials may not come in contact with CO2. LAUDA Versafreeze safety cooling systems include an accumulator which supplies power to the safety cooling system and the alarm module. An optional data logger for external control and recording of the chamber temperature is also available. The data logger has adjustable limit value monitoring with an acoustic alarm and sufficient memory for up to 60,000 measurement values with sample times from 1 sec to 24 h. All devices are equipped with a data logger integrated in the controller as standard.
Extensive accessories for individual customer requirements
LAUDA Versafreeze ultra-freezers are characterized by exceptional variability and perfectly tailored accessories. Upon request, the deep-freeze appliances can be equipped at the factory with additional options to increase safety and performance. In addition to an optionally selectable water cooling system, drawer sets, appliance-specific factory certificates, plug-in units for boxes, microtiter and DeepWell plates are available to make optimum use of the chamber of the deep-freeze appliance. Their use guarantees clearly arranged and safe storage of all the sample material. LAUDA Versafreeze ultra-freezers have proven themselves in a wide variety of applications for decades and also solve the most difficult problems, no matter whether they are series devices or special solutions. Special equipment and customized accessories can be flexibly manufactured in our high-quality in-house sheet metal processing shop.
LAUDA World Market Leader Champion for the fifth time
LAUDA DR. R. WOBSER GMBH & CO. KG has once again been declared World Market Leader Champion in the field of "Constant Temperature Equipment and Systems for Precise Temperature Generation". This is the fifth award in a row for LAUDA. The family-owned company has been represented in the World Market Leader Index since the survey first started. The well-respected index has been drawn up under the direction of Prof. Dr. Christoph Müller from the University of St. Gallen since 2015. Every year, the business magazine WirtschaftsWoche selects the 450 world market leaders in their respective industries in a special edition.
"We are very proud of our repeated nomination as World Market Leader Champion," says Dr. Gunther Wobser, the President and CEO of LAUDA. "Our employees in the two German locations and the twelve foreign subsidiaries work day-in and day-out to drive forward the performance of the temperature control technology and to inspire our worldwide customers with temperatures in line with our mission statement". The fact that this has also been successful against the background of a global pandemic shows that LAUDA is excellently positioned with its comprehensive portfolio of temperature control and laboratory equipment. The company has so far been able to avoid introducing short-time working and even reported a maximum number of new trainees this year. In addition, the sales level was maintained compared with the previous year with more than 90 million euro.
Equipment and systems from LAUDA are used in a wide range of industries, including the automotive and pharmaceutical industries, research & development and aerospace. In particular, LAUDA constant temperature and laboratory equipment is increasingly used in vaccine production and logistics. For example, LAUDA Versa-freeze ultra-freezers are making an important contribution to the storage of the sensitive corona vaccine. "In an extremely difficult year, this award is a welcome and motivating recognition of our performance", concludes Dr. Gunther Wobser.
LAUDA has completed the integration of laboratory devices with the "GFL Technology” quality mark over the past year, including water baths, shakers and ultra-freezers for the storage of vaccines. LAUDA has implemented a strategic corporate objective in the shape of the GOAL (Global Ordering and Logistics) project and has consistently aligned international sales to the needs of LAUDA customers by reorganizing the worldwide logistics and production processes. As a result, the world market leader has simplified and standardized its worldwide ordering process, so that it is now possible to obtain all LAUDA products from a single source.
In addition, the family-owned company is consistently pushing ahead with digitalization, e.g. with the monitoring and control of constant temperature equipment via the LAUDA Cloud in the LAUDA Ultracool circulation chillers or the new generation of LAUDA Integral process thermostats. The world market leader is also further expanding its strategic innovation management, e.g. with its collaboration in the "Maschinenraum", an innovative collaboration platform for German SMEs, and sustainable partnerships with various start-up companies, or new.degree, its innovation laboratory in Sunnyvale, CA, USA.
Success through hard work and a pioneering spirit
We are celebrating a big "O" at LAUDA, the world market leader in temperature control equipment and systems. President and CEO, Dr. Gunther Wobser has reached his half-century. With a degree and doctorate in business administration, he is the third generation of the family to manage the company. With its headquarters in Lauda-Königshofen, LAUDA was founded by his grandfather, Dr. Rudolf Wobser in 1956.
After completing his studies and gaining initial experience in an international corporation, Dr. Gunther Wobser began his career as Head of Marketing in July 1997. He has been managing the temperature control specialist as President and CEO since 2003. Dr. Gunther Wobser shared responsibility with his father, Dr. Gerhard Wobser until 2010. Today he is actively supported by the two managing directors, Dr. Mario Englert and Dr. Marc Stricker.
International expansion of the temperature control specialist
An important focus of Dr. Gunther Wobser's work is the internationalization of the medium-sized company. He founded the first foreign subsidiary, LAUDA France S.A.R.L., in 2005, and LAUDA has a total of nine sales companies abroad today. In addition to founding new companies, the business administration graduate acquired a total of four companies, three of which are located abroad. With the most recent addition, LAUDA-GFL Gesellschaft für Labortechnik mbH in Burgwedel near Hanover, Dr. Gunther Wobser expanded the LAUDA Group with a fifth production location and supplemented the product range in the key market of laboratories. The company's turnover has grown steadily from around 18 million euros in 1997 to around 92 million euros today. In the same period, the number of employees increased from 180 to 520 today, with more than 100 of them outside Germany. Even in the current challenging times, the largest employer in Lauda-Königshofen is managing without short-time working and continues to hire. The highest number of trainees in the company's history with nine new additions was reported recently. The global family-owned company is known for fair treatment of its qualified employees and enjoys an excellent reputation both regionally and in professional circles.
A leading role in innovation and digitalization
With his current focus on innovation and digitalization, Dr. Gunther Wobser continues to drive the LAUDA success story forward. He ran the company from the Silicon Valley location for one year as of July 2017 and established new.degree, his own innovation laboratory, which is now part of the newly created innovation team in Germany. A facility was also opened in September in the new "Maschinenraum" in Berlin, an innovative collaboration platform for medium-sized businesses. In addition to directing idea management, the tasks include testing ideas outside the core business and co-operating with start-ups, such as the multiple award-winning heating specialist watttron. So it is appropriate that the pioneer has recorded his insights in a book to be published at the Frankfurt Book Fair just in time for his birthday.
LAUDA provides temperature control at -80 °C for freeze-dryer
LAUDA, the world market leader for temperature control equipment and systems, has been manufacturing customer-specific refrigeration systems for pharmaceutical companies for more than 50 years. The company has now completed a cryogenic cooling system for use in a pharmaceutical freeze-drying plant. This enables pharmaceutical substances to be gently frozen at -80 °C. The order was placed by Martin Christ Gefriertrocknungsanlagen GmbH, one of the world's leading freeze-dryer companies with more than 70 years of experience in this field. Martin Christ relies on the expertise of LAUDA for the reliable provision of the deep-freeze environment. A Kryopac Secondary Circuit Unit from LAUDA Heating and cooling systems, the plant construction division of the temperature control specialist, which plans and manufactures exactly according to customer requirements, provides the requisite cooling capacity.
Drugs and vaccines are essential for the treatment of diseases and the health of people worldwide. Since many drugs would only have a short shelf life when dissolved in water, the pharmaceutical industry relies on gentle freeze-drying for longer preservation. LAUDA was quickly chosen as the cryogenics expert for Martin Christ for the manufacture of a freeze-drying plant for an international pharmaceutical company. Apart from LAUDA's comprehensive know-how, the two companies have enjoyed a successful working relationship for many years. "We are specialists for extremely low temperatures and have been able to gain valuable experience in this field over many years", emphasizes Ralph Herbert, the project manager for Heating and cooling systems.
Liquid nitrogen provides temperatures down to -115 °C
Precise temperature control for the freeze-dryer is provided by a LAUDA Kryopac Secondary Circuit Unit, which enables cryogenic reactions to be safely controlled. The possibility of individual temperature control of the shelves and the ice condenser is of great importance in this refrigeration system. But the Kryopac, a heat exchanger specially developed for the evaporation of liquid nitrogen, is the heart of the system. Liquid nitrogen boils at -196 °C and is therefore particularly suitable as a refrigerant for applications which require extremely low temperatures. Depending on the design of the Kryopac system, temperatures down to -115 °C are possible in the secondary refrigerant oil circuit. The -80 °C required for the freeze-dryer is therefore reached quickly and exactly to the degree. Liquid nitrogen is also a non-flammable refrigerant which is preferred not only by the end customer but also by the pharmaceutical industry in general. Other advantages include economic, safety and environmental aspects, such as low investment costs and lack of waste products. Depending on the specification of the application, the nitrogen requirement can be decreased by adapting the control system designed by LAUDA, thereby significantly reducing operating costs.
The heat technology of the Kryopac system is derived from the proven LAUDA Heat Transfer Units used by many customers. These produce a temperature-controlled liquid flow and are delivered as a compact, fully insulated, ready-to-connect system with a control cabinet. The benefit: There are no freezing problems in the heat exchangers here. Precise temperature control, compact design and high plant availability were particularly important for Martin Christ's customer. The LAUDA Kryopac Secondary Circuit Unit also meets these requirements without any problems.
Freeze-drying makes use of a physical phenomenon
Freeze-drying is an extremely gentle preservation method, as the chemical properties of the source substances are not changed. All the active ingredients in pharmaceutical products are therefore preserved. This type of preservation is also used for sample preparation in laboratories, in the food industry or archeology, for example to preserve wet leather or wood.
The refrigeration system of the Kryopac system cools the shelves on which vessels filled with drugs are placed with a cooling capacity of 30 kW at -80 °C and freezes the pharmaceuticals in two and a half hours. Heat is supplied during evacuation, the removal of air by creating a vacuum. This results in a physical phenomenon called sublimation: The frozen water evaporates without liquefying. The drug is dried directly from the frozen state. The resulting water vapor is deposited on the ice condenser of the freeze-dryer in the form of ice crystals. The ice condenser is maintained at a temperature of -80 °C by the Kryopac system. A complete freeze-drying process typically takes 48 hours.
The Kryopac system was initially completely tested at LAUDA and then subjected to a further thorough inspection as a complete system at Martin Christ before the freeze-dryer was delivered to the end customer. However, this is not the end of the cooperation. As a result of the successful working relationship and implementation of this project, Martin Christ has already ordered two more LAUDA Kryopac Secondary Circuit Units.