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In-House Research and Development

Mar-Bal, Inc. is committed to providing their customers with the very best quality and service. Moreover, the company is dedicated to their employees. It is the employees that listen to the customers to formulate and design products that best fit the customer needs.

The Research and Development Center is a key component in supplying employees with the best technology for mastering quality products for our customers. Two important beneficiaries of the Research and Development Center are the materials and product engineering teams.

The materials engineering team is responsible for the formulation stage. They customize materials to fit the customer’s needs. This can include adding flame resistance, color stability and close dimensional control. The product engineering team is responsible for providing full service support during the design phase. The product team is responsible for tooling designs, prototyping model capabilities and mold-flow analysis for enhanced part design.

The Research and Development center is part of keeping Mar-Bal, Inc. a one source provider. The lab allows the product engineers to run preliminary tests that would otherwise be run by a third party vendor. Moreover, the facility benefits the materials engineers by allowing them to perform various Quality Control testing to ensure consistency from materials to production and develop material specifications. These practices reduce the customer’s overall cost by reducing the amount of failed products that would have gone through third party testing standards and deformulating materials quickly and accurately with equipment within the center.

MAR-BAL-QUEENSWAY-(72)The Research and Development center has equipment within the lab to better help the employees assist our customers. “Our R&D facility has many different pieces of testing equipment. Some for testing material and others for testing finished product. Of those, we have a flame cabinet that does testing of material for the UL94 standard.” Said Mitch McClung, an insulator product engineer. “We also have FT-IR, TGA, and DSC testing equipment. All of these machines run tests to help determine the makeup of the material.”

Casey Blabolil, a materials engineer, also uses the innovations within the lab to fit the customer’s needs. “We are constantly adding in new equipment for our R&D center. One of these additions is our 3D printer. The 3D printer is a great tool as it allows our customers to get a physical part in hand without the need for cutting steel or aluminum for a prototype mold.” Said Blabolil. “Customers can then see what their part will look like and can use this to redesign or give confidence in the part prior to cutting that expensive PO for a prototype tool.”

The product and materials engineers often collaborate to produce the best products on the market. “We work together in many different areas to make sure that we produce the best possible products that we can.” Said McClung.

Many notable findings have come out of the lab in the Research and Development center. “With all of the equipment wehave in-house we’ve been able to develop several new product lines and are in the process of coming up with even more. Most recently we were able to do pre-screening for a UL F1 rating which we just received on our MB3000-15NY series.” Said Blabolil. “We are also currently developing a high temperature resistant material designed to meet a UL certified RTI of ≥180⁰C.”

The Research and Development center allows Mar-Bal, Inc. to test the quality of the materials and products based on industry standards. The testing done in-house is crucial to ensuring the company is delivering materials and designs that exceed the customer’s expectation while keeping costs low.

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Topics: Thermoset Composites, Research, Research and Development, Engineering, Engineers, Materials Engineer, Manufacturing, UL, Underwriters Laboratories, Composites, Development, Engineer, Product Engineer