Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE), held a “groundbreaking” ceremony in mid-July for the BHGE Inspection Technology Customer Solutions Center, scheduled to open later this year in Cincinnati, Ohio. The ceremony provided an overview of the center which will serve as a test bed and proving ground for inspection techniques and validation of new equipment.
We caught up with Holger Laubenthal, CEO at BHGE Inspection Technologies, to learn more about this exciting development in an exclusive AMazing® Q&A conversation.
AMazing®: Holger, thank you for your participation and congratulations on breaking ground for the new BHGE Inspection Technology Customer Solutions Center. What does this milestone represent for a company that has transformed to become a global digital industrial company?
Holger Laubenthal: Thank you. This groundbreaking is one big example of how GE is committed to technical leadership in the nondestructive testing industry (NDT), and to the North America region. This new center in Cincinnati will be a flagship location where we can develop, test and apply industrial technologies. This is a core differentiator for us – developing solutions directly with customers. We are leveraging our global capabilities for local impact, accelerating innovation across industries that move, power, and improve our lives.
AMazing®: Which industries will be served by the BHGE Inspection Technology Customer Solutions Center?
Holger Laubenthal: One of our core strengths with the new center is our dedication to application engineering. This means we’re developing solutions to specific inspection-related customer challenges, across several industries. This brings us closer to our customers. That’s one of the biggest benefits of this center – co-located in an important industry concentration, including Aviation, Additive for industrial 3D printing, and Automotive.
AMazing®: What services will be offered to help companies drive down costs, achieve customer outcomes (safety, reliability and operational productivity) and reduce risks, including those interested in the commercialization of additive technologies?
Holger Laubenthal: We offer the broadest portfolio of nondestructive testing solutions in the industry, and we were recently named the number one NDT company by a leading market research firm. This is a major strength because it allows us to apply a variety of methods to solve each customer’s unique inspection challenge, rather than sell them an off-the-shelf solution. Whether it is high-speed 3D computed tomography, advanced metrology, digital radiography, or connected portable ultrasonic and visual inspection devices, or installed digital monitoring systems we’re successfully applying all these technologies to help our customers improve reliability, reduce compliance costs and improve productivity. Given GE’s leadership position in additive manufacturing, we are uniquely positioned to grow with and drive progress in this industry.
AMazing®: What must organizations do now to embrace new inspection technologies?
Holger Laubenthal: The inspection and reliability industry is being rapidly transformed by digital technology. To keep pace with the industry leaders, industries for sure need to adopt the latest sensing and inspection hardware. But just as important as gathering quality data is managing and analyzing the results. Data for data’s sake is not useful – in fact it can become a data management nightmare! The companies at the leading edge are finding ways to transmit data seamlessly across methods, and using advanced analytics to develop insights and make better decisions – that’s where the future lies.
AMazing®: How do you anticipate the world of inspections will change in the coming years?
Holger Laubenthal: The new inspection that will be popular tomorrow are already here today – they just aren’t widely adopted. The common themes I see are core technologies, digitization, digital thread and artificial intelligence. Core technologies, whether in CT, Ultrasound or other areas, are always critical – your data is only as good as your image capture is. Digitization means moving the collection of inspection data toward more seamless digital technologies, installed monitoring, and better connectivity between sensors and servers.
The digital thread means combining inspection data from different methods over time to create more sophisticated models of critical assets – being able to look at a turbine blade, for example, and comparing its “as manufactured” specs from its original factory manufacture to in-service data being collected on a runway.
The final trend is artificial intelligence. In NDT circles, we speak about “automated defect recognition” – the ability for analytics to identify potential defects with the accuracy and precision of a trained expert. All of these capabilities exist today, and we are investing heavily in these research areas at BHGE. You’ll see a lot more about these themes in the years ahead.
This concludes our interview. Holger, thank you again. We are very grateful for the opportunity to learn how GE is committed to technical leadership in the nondestructive testing industry.
About Holger Laubenthal
Holger is CEO at BHGE Inspection Technologies. In this role, he leads a global business offering leading inspection products and services to a variety of industries. In addition to Oil and Gas, customers served are in the Aviation, Power, Renewables, Automotive, Metlas, and Electronics industries. The business offers world-class technologies and digital solutions for asset integrity and production process deployment purposes.
Prior to this, Holger was the Chief Executive Officer of Mubadala GE Capital, a 50/50 commercial finance JV between Mubadala (the development company of Abu Dhabi, with $65B in assets) and GE Capital. During his tenure, which started in June 2014, the company achieved strong investment grade ratings, drove record balance sheet and income growth, and successfully issued its inaugural bond.
About Baker Hughes
Baker Hughes, a GE company (NYSE:BHGE) is the world’s first and only full stream provider of integrated oilfield products, services and digital solutions. Drawing on a storied heritage of invention, BHGE harnesses the passion and experience of its people to enhance productivity across the oil and gas value chain. BHGE helps its customers acquire, transport and refine hydrocarbons more efficiently, productively and safely, with a smaller environmental footprint and at lower cost per barrel. Backed by the digital industrial strength of GE, the company deploys minds, machines and the cloud to break down silos and reduce waste and risk, applying breakthroughs from other industries to advance its own. With operations in over 120 countries, the company’s global scale, local know-how and commitment to service infuse over a century of experience with the spirit of a startup – inventing smarter ways to bring energy to the world. https://www.bhge.com/
+1 405 406 5813
BHGE Inspection Technologies Customer Solution Center
11988 Tramway Dr.
Cincinnati, OH 45241 USA
Source: Baker Hughes a GE company
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