Smiths Detection GUARDION
Smart sourcing helped the GUARDION portable GC/MS chemical identifier provide a more portable, more efficient, reliable means of on-site chemical threat detection.
The project to develop the GUARDION portable GC/MS chemical identifier involved manufacturing resources from locations near and far. Nexus Design worked with Smiths Detection to design and engineer an enclosure for the portable GC/MS. The enclosure had to meet extensive temperature regulation requirements, withstand rough physical treatment, and survive hazardous chemical and biological environments.
Development of the device’s core technology was accomplished with a partnership between Smiths Detection in Connecticut and Torion (now Perkin Elmer) in Colorado. Nexus took on the design of numerous plastic and die cast components, as well as sourcing prototypes and ultimately production parts for the device enclosure.
Early prototype parts were created locally, with Nexus’s 3D printing capability. Additional parts were fabricated through the utilization of rapid prototyping vendors in New York and North Carolina. Competitive quotes and other \ vendor communications were managed and executed by Nexus.
Working within the framework of ITAR and EAR regulations, Nexus organized competitive quoting, DFM evaluations, and on-site facility visits to numerous parts manufacturers. These visits included a compression molder in New York, a die caster in Minnesota, and a plastic injection molder based in China. While the core technological components and some large enclosure parts are manufactured domestically, some non-technical components, such as covers and handles, were fabricated using sources overseas.
Parts ultimately arrive, traveling from a few hundred to thousands of miles away, at a domestic Smiths Detection facility, where the final assembly and testing takes place. The success of this sourcing plan lies in the freedom to choose the best combination of qualities from a myriad of factors: regulatory compliance, component quality, flexibility to produce low volume quantities, vendor technical capability, and cost. Nexus made this plan work. Nexus design provided Smiths Detection with the resources and information to manufacture a superior product and enjoyed the process!