Members of the HORIBA team standing in front of the Renault Lardy Technical Center.
The 24 member technical department of HORIBA France ATS services 40 customers from different backgrounds; including car and engine makers, automotive suppliers, as well as state and private laboratories or universities. The department’s Emissions, Mechatronics, Test Automation and applications teams provide a wide range of services; from sales and technical support, to project installation and commissioning. They also offer training and methods for maintenance. The main goal is always to achieve complete customer satisfaction. HORIBA implements these services, for example, in a maintenance contract with Renault.
On-site expertise at Renault Lardy Technical Center
For the last five years, HORIBA France has been providing services for emission products at Renault on a growing scope. In the beginning, HORIBA maintained 30 measuring lines with three service engineers working one shift. After a recent expansion of service done by HORIBA, a team of nine is currently maintaining more than 100 lines, working on weekdays from 6:00 am to 8:30 pm. The Renault Lardy Technical Center, which consists of engine test cells and a few high dynamics test cells, includes up to 70 percent HORIBA instruments as well as equipment from other manufacturers. On top of the standard MEXA-7000, mobile instruments were recently added to the scope of the staff on-site; the 50-plus addition covers everything from MEXA-1400QL-NX and MEXA-SPCS, to FTIR and particle mass measurement systems. In addition, a lot of six chassis dynamometers and two engine cells, located at other French sites of the Renault Group, are also part of this contract.
Close exchange for best results
To ensure the high quality of HORIBA’s services, Jérôme Lefebvre, on-site manager of the HORIBA team performing the maintenance on emission systems at Renault Lardy Technical Center, meets with his counterpart from the Renault maintenance department each Tuesday morning. Together, they review the highlights of the past seven days and schedule the week to come. In addition to these weekly meetings, there are also monthly and tri-monthly meetings held by high-level Renault and HORIBA staff. These provide the opportunity to share problems and solutions to lengthy and recurrent breakdowns, to show improvements in predictive maintenance jobs, and ensure reliability of the systems. Over the years, the main challenge for HORIBA has been to provide high-quality, timely service that both meets the customer’s expectations, and stays within the financial agreement. HORIBA has made an effort to put experienced, customer-oriented employees to work with Renault. These team members are encouraged to create strong connections with Renault staff, and remain open to new ideas and creative problem solving. The members of the team participate in regular training sessions and, to remain versatile, are given the opportunity to work on similar tasks at other customer facilities. Recent requests for 24/7 on-call service engineers, or moving an entire chassis dyno made by a competitor between two sites, are examples of HORIBA’s flexibility and dedication to customer satisfaction. Every aspect of a contract, whether HORIBA is dealing with spare parts, test cells availability or maintenance cost reduction, aims to satisfy the customer’s specifications and requirements so that Jérôme Lefebvre can meet his customers with confidence for his weekly update.