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Engineered Custom Lubricants (ECL) recently announced that customers with a smartphone, tablet or personal computer can now link in real time to the company's research and development lab to review and discuss laboratory tests to ensure a grease meets specifications.
ECL replaced its desktop computers that monitor each piece of laboratory test equipment with networked Android tablets, which process data faster and allow laboratory personnel to check on tests remotely.
"Offering customers the same remote, real-time access was the next logical step," said Paul Bedford, ECL vice president of sales and marketing.
Before a customer decides to run life-cycle tests with a grease, ECL conducts several tests to pre-qualify the grease to the customer's specifications, including its compatibility with design materials and its ability to perform at extreme temperatures, reduce wear, stay where it's applied, resist oxidation and repel water or harsher fluids and gases.
Using their smart phones, tablets or PCs, customers can now view tests in progress through live tablet cameras, review test data in multiple formats, view electron microscope scans, and discuss both test protocols and up-to-the-minute results with chemists and tribologists.
Customers "enter" the ECL lab through a secure password-protected website. The password expires after the session is complete.
"One part of our technology leadership strategy is to use information technology to get closer to our customers," said Dr. Kasturi Lal, ECL vice president of technology. "In addition to real-time data, we see the virtual lab program as a great in-service education opportunity for customers who want a better understanding of the analytical tests and equipment we use to develop and qualify their greases. Fundamentally, this is a major lab upgrade that allows us to collaborate, monitor and process test data faster — and fast development and turnaround is what all customers want and need to be competitive."
For more information, visit www.ECLLube.com.