Consistency is key at NUTEC, the front-runner in Mexico’s industrial heating industry. With more than three decades of experience, the company, which produces high temperature insulation fibers, sends its top-notch products to countries around the world. Rachel Hartman reports.
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When a high temperature insulation wool blanket rolls leaves the production site at Nutec, customers can be certain that the product continually meets both the market specifications and the client’s exact requirements.
Perhaps the company’s most notable products consist of insulation wool blankets, which are designed to meet the specific heat containment need of customers. Nutec also specializes in bio soluble blankets and thermal insulation systems. The company offers installation drawings and services as well.
Headquarters for Nutec are found in Monterrey, Mexico. In addition, the company has two plants in the country, both of which are located in the northern city of Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila. It owns a subsidiary in the U.S. and has a plant in Berriz, Spain. Nutec has a joint venture with IBAR refractories in Sao Paulo, Brazil, as well.
Nutec’s products are present in more than 50 countries around the globe. The company operates in a variety of industries, including the petrochemical, ceramic, power generation, glass and heat segments.
Decades of Experience
Nutec was first incorporated in 1975. At the time, the company manufactured industrial burners and combustion equipment. It carried out operations under license from North American Manufacturing Company of Cleveland, Ohio.
Several years later, in 1979, it began distributing high temperature insulation wools. Then in 1985, the company began manufacturing high temperature insulation wools under its trademark FIBRATEC. A little more than a decade later, in 1996, Nutec Premier was incorporated as a joint venture with Premier Refractories, Inc., for the acquisition of a manufacturing plant in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila.
During the following years, Nutec experienced growth and expansion. In 2004, Nutec Ibar was incorporated as a joint venture with Refractarios Ibar, LTD., with a manufacturing facility in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
By 2005, Nutec was considered to be the leader in Mexico’s industrial heating industry, and had a presence in 46 countries. In 2010, the company added two new products to its line: appliances and grease ducts.
In 2012, the company opened a new vacuum forming facility in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila. The second Mexican plant focuses on the manufacturing of boards and special shapes products.
In its blanket category, Nutec manufactures the MaxWool spun ceramic wool blanket. The product is made of long, flexible, interwoven fibers that are manufactured by a special spinning process. This results in a strong, yet lightweight, material.
In the refining and petrochemical segment, the MaxWool blanket can be used in applications such as reformer and pyrolysis furnaces; tube seals, gaskets and expansion joints; high temperature pipe, duct, and turbine insulation; and crude oil heater linings.
In the steel industry, the MaxWool blanket serves in the following areas: heat treating and nnealing furnaces; furnace door linings and seals; soaking pit covers and seals; furnace hot face repairs; reheat furnaces; and ladle covers. It also is used in the ceramic industry for kiln car insulation and seals, as well as continuous and batch kilns.
For the power generation industry, the MaxWool blankets has applications such as boiler insulation, boiler doors, reusable turbine covers, and pipe covering. Some of its other applications are the insulation of commercial dryers and covers, veneer over existing refractory, stress relieving furnaces, glass furnace crown insulation, and fire protection.
Another of the company’s products, the MaxWool Tank Car Blanket, uses silica sand and calcined alumina. These materials are melted in an electric arc furnace, and then dropped onto high speed wheels to create the fibers. These fibers are stripped off with air and placed on a conveyor, and the accumulation of the fiber is needled to the required thickness and density.
The MaxWool Tank Car Blanket meets the thermal properties for fire protection required by the Department of Transportation (DOT). It can be used as insulation in various DOT rail car classes, and as an insulation system for chlorine tank cars as well.
Nutec also produces Supermag, which is a high temperature body soluble fiber. It uses a spinning technology to create a special fiber with top-notch thermal and mechanical properties. The fiber consists of a mix of calcium, silica, and magnesium. The Supermag products can be used in refractory linings, thermal insulation, and fire protection applications.
In addition to these, the company manufactures the MaxWool Acoustic Grade Blanket, which absorbs sound and resists vibration. It also produces the MaxWool Wet Pack Blanket, which is presaturated with a solution that causes it to harden when exposed to ambient air or heat. This can be used in applications with high velocity or process atmospheres for corrosion resistance.
In its state-of-the-art facilities, Nutec produces MaxBlok Modules, which are full thickness furnace linings. Each module is continuously folded and compressed to exact density levels to provide a longer furnace life. MaxBlok Modules can be used in the ceramic industry for applications such as low mass kiln cars, continuous and batch kilns, door linings, and glazing and porcelain furnace linings. In the power generation industry, these products serve in duct linings, heat recovery systems, boiler insulation, and stack linings.
For the steel industry, MaxBlok Modules have applications such as pre-heat ladle covers, heat treat furnaces, soaking pit covers and seals, and reheat furnaces. Other applications include the insulation of commercial dryers and ovens, veneer over existing refractory, stress relieving insulation, and glass furnace crown insulation.
Nutec offers clients module hardware, including attachment systems that can be easily be installed in furnaces.
It also produces MaxBoard, which are vacuum formed products that are made to resist high velocities. In addition, its MaxForm shapes, which are processed from alumina and silica blends, can be used in furnace linings, boiler duct and stack linings.
Nutec makes MaxMoldable, which is a tacky, putty-like material that adheres to ceramic wools and refractory material. Another product, known as the MaxWool Rigidizer, can be applied to insulation surfaces. After drying, the substance hardens the surface, making it more resistant to high velocity.
To continually improve its output, Nutec has pilot facilities where new products can be tested. Additionally, the company has various certifications to help it focus on quality and consistency, including ISO 9001-2008 certification. Several years ago, it received Customs-Trade Partnership against Terrorism (C-TPAT) certification. It also has UL certification for various applications.
While the focus on quality products continues to serve as an umbrella over the company’s operations, Nutec considers its people to be the real key to success. By viewing its employee base as its strongest resource, the company helps workers develop talents and increase capabilities.
In the coming years, Nutec plans to maintain a focus on consistent products. It also is prepared to continue expanding through its distribution network. As it manufactures products for the insulation needs of clients in a variety of industries, Nutec looks to not only meet, but also exceed, customers’ expectations.