The Lincoln Electric Co. opened an innovative Automation Center of Excellence, adjacent to its Cleveland world headquarters in late October.

The 100,000-ft2, state-of-the-art facility was designed as a showcase for the company's comprehensive robotic welding systems and Lincoln Electric's investment in one of the fastest growing areas of welding.

The center enhances and expands services and products offered by Lincoln Electric's Automation Division. It includes two fully equipped robotic welding labs, 20,000 ft2 of staging and assembly area, an applications and service lab, classroom facilities, and a state-of-the-art auditorium.

Richard Seif, senior vice president of global marketing for Lincoln Electric, said the significant growth of automated welding in the United States was one of the prime reasons the company launched the Automation Center.

“Lincoln Electric is committed to creating comprehensive automated welding solutions that increase productivity, improve quality and enhance a safe work environment that make our customers more successful,” Seif said.

The company's Automation Division offers a product portfolio that includes flexible automation, hard automation and pipe cutting systems, environmental systems and fume extraction systems, and it expects expansive growth in the coming years.

The company said the new center will allow it to provide better training and service to its customers.

For many of its automated welding systems, Lincoln Electric partners with FANUC Ltd., the supplier of industrial robots. The company expanded its North American partnership with FANUC earlier this year to become the preferred supplier of welding sources to FANUC's Asian customers.

“This facility and our continued partnership with FANUC allow us to provide better technology integration for more cost-effective systems and expands our worldwide marketing of robotic welding solutions,” Chris Bailey, the general manager for Lincoln Electric's Automation Division, said.

Lincoln Electric Co.'s new Automation Center includes the following facilities:

  • A 42-seat auditorium with web cameras, large screen, and kitchenette.

  • An administrative office and conference rooms that include 10,000 ft2 of office and meeting space for administrative, engineering, service and support staff, three fully equipped conference rooms and two smaller meeting areas.

  • A training facility with two state-of-the-art classrooms, each of which can accommodate 16 to 24 students, and two welding robotic labs for training and exercises.

  • A 20,000-ft2 assembly floor for system assembly served by two shipping and receiving docks and a 20-ton capacity overhead crane.

  • An 8,000-ft2 applications laboratory for demonstration and testing of robotic welding, hard automation, and environmental and fume extraction systems and customer part testing.

  • A 6,000-ft2 service and support area for preventive maintenance programs and equipment rebuilding and spare parts services.