Witte Pumps & Technology GmbH, the German maker of gear pumps for extrusion, has moved into a new headquarters factory in the Hamburg area, and the company also is beefing up its U.S. operation.
The new plant in Tornesch has 3,500 square meters (37,675 square feet) of production space. Large cranes will enable Witte to easily move large pumps weighing up to 40 metric tons.
Witte officials said the building uses an energy-efficient heat pump to regenerate energy used for heating and air conditioning. Windows allow a large amount of natural light.
Witte moved from its former headquarters in nearby Uetersen.
In 2005, the German company opened a North American sales and service facility in Lawrenceville, Ga., Witte Pumps & Technology LLC.
Robert Butts, sales manager for the United States and Canada, said Witte makes standard precision gear pumps, but also offers more customized, application specific pumps.
A gear pump, also called a melt pump, is installed between an extruder and the die, to control the input and output pressure of the melt before it is formed into a final product, and to ensure precise feeding.
Applications for Witte pumps include sheet extrusion, film extrusion, compounding and resin polymerization. Other markets are cosmetics, pharmaceutical and the food industries.
Witte officials plan to expand into pumps for offshore and marine engineering.
“The advantage of Witte is that not only do we product standard, off-the-shelf pumps, but they come up with products for special solutions,” Butts said. “And that's a big area of interest we're discovering, is that we'll tailor around the application needs if the pump is not quite right.”
Witte sells gear pumps to extruder manufacturers and to extrusion processors. The company offers pumps with three types of gears: helical, herringbone and spur.
The herringbone gear design is designed to reduce pulsation in running sensitive polymers, and products such as biaxially stretched polyester films. Witte worked with a customer to replace an existing gear pump with a special herringbone pump for that application.
At the new factory in Tornesch, Witte continues its work in research and development of pumps and analyzing materials.
In Georgia, the executive vice president is Matt Upton. Before joining Witte, Upton was extrusion market manager for Maag Pump Systems.
Butts, who joined Witte in June, has 25 years of experience in sales and marketing of capital equipment. He worked at G.F. Goodman & Son Inc., American Leistritz Extruder Corp., AEC Inc., SteereAmerica Inc., Novatec Inc. and R.T. Kuntz Co. Inc.