The Development Office has existed from the very beginning of Pronar Wheels’ operation. It coordinates all activities related to the production of wheels. The most important of them include the design of products, equipment, production lines and devices for the production of rims and the development of manufacturing technologies.
The Development Office is also responsible for introducing new wheels to the Pronar Wheels offer. They are introduced on the basis of market demand and assessment. The factor supporting decision-making in this regard are talks with Pronar’s business partners.
The process of implementing a new product (e.g. rims) consists of several stages. At the beginning, its initial construction is developed. Then – numerical analysis of the design, on the basis of which changes in the design are made in order to achieve the maximum strength of the product. The next step is to develop a technology for making a new product. In this case, engineers pay special attention to achieving the highest possible quality while maintaining the lowest possible production costs.
The next very important stage in the development of a new wheel design is to carry out fatigue tests and field tests. Fatigue tests are performed at the Research and Development Center, and field tests – with the use of Pronar agricultural machines. The tests are carried out in accordance with the European Union standards. In addition, the engineers from Narew developed their own testing standards that went beyond those adopted by European units. They allow for a more in-depth inspection of the rims.
Within 20 years, Pronar Wheels has become one of the world’s most important manufacturers of rims for agricultural and construction machinery. It was possible, inter alia, thanks to the fact that the engineers working on technical development were not afraid of challenges. By implementing subsequent projects, they created the seventh generation of the rim production line. An important aspect of development is also the use of the latest manufacturing technologies and taking them into account in the design of new machines. Pronar engineers are just finishing tests of a new automatic welding machine based on the new welding method, which will be used in Poland for the first time.
Last year, the Pronar Wheels factory in Narewka was enriched with two powerful hydraulic presses with a pressure of 3,150 and 5,000 tons. The employees of the Development Office developed a manipulator project for their operation, which was made in the Tool Department. Designing such specialized tooling was a complicated and very demanding process, which took a lot of time. At the beginning, the machine construction specialists made a structural design of the manipulator. They cooperated with automation engineers, whose task was to design the control (control cabinets), prepare the software (write the control program) and visualization.
The Pronar Wheels Development Office is also working on the equipment supporting the production presses in Narewka. Its modernization will increase the production capacity and allow the implementation of new products, e.g. the double wheel system prepared by Pronar Wheels engineers.
It is also planned to install another manipulator at the factory in Narewka, which was also designed by engineers from the Development Office. Its construction plans have already been handed over to the Tool Department which will carry it out. The manipulator will operate a press with a pressure of 3,150 tons. In addition, project of the next manipulator cooperating with a press with a pressure of 5000 tons is nearing completion. It will be part of an automated production line that also supports an innovative laser cutting system, which was made by an international company at the special request of the Development Office.
The tasks of the Development Office also include contact with customers. Pronar Wheels produces wheels for the largest companies in the world, therefore constant contact with their representatives is necessary. In addition to production, the Development Office also prepares full technical documentation of the product if it is required by customers. It is a source of information about it (including technical and material data) and confirmation that the product is of the highest quality and meets all the required standards. The documentation also includes all test results.
The Pronar Wheels Development Office also employs people whose task is to analyse the risk and eliminate errors in products. Due to the fact that Pronar Wheels is the manufacturer and owner of the technology, it can eliminate errors at the production stage by interfering with the work of machines and instrumentation (this also applies to rapid changes in the production of products ordered by customers). If Pronar did not own the technology and machines – such efficient modification would not be possible, if only due to the loss of warranty.