Quality Magazine

Case Studies: Counting in the Thousands

February 1, 2007
Keeping track of some 2,000 gages and other devices represents a clear challenge to any system, particularly for an organization that deals with the nation’s safety and security. Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL, Los Alamos, NM), a leading research institution, is meeting this challenge with GAGEpack EZ from PQ Systems (Miamisburg, OH).

 



GAGEpack from PQ Systems has helped Los Alamos National Laboratory keep track of some 2,000 gages and other devices. Source: PQ Systems


Keeping track of some 2,000 gages and other devices represents a clear challenge to any system, particularly for an organization that deals with the nation’s safety and security. Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL, Los Alamos, NM), a leading research institution, is meeting this challenge with GAGEpack EZ from PQ Systems (Miamisburg, OH).



To address the challenge of keeping track of this many measurement devices, LANL wanted a system that would be easy and accurate, demanding less employee time and greater consistency in records. Because “science at the highest level must thrive at Los Alamos,” as its Web site declares, having precise and accurate records was particularly important to the inspection team managing calibration equipment.

“We needed to manage time better,” says Randy Flores, dimensional inspection team leader for the lab facility in New Mexico. With anywhere from five to 100 gages needing attention each month, keeping track of the devices was more than a full-time job. Flores and his colleagues found the software that they were using too burdensome, requiring hours of tracking. That is when they turned to GAGEpack from PQ Systems.

 



Now, the inspection team can upload 2,000 items, adding custom builds and more customized inspection reports. Gages can be linked to other gages, Flores says, and the inspection team is now getting real-time interpretation of data from gages.

Prior to adopting GAGEpack, team members often had “their own little database files,” says Francisco Lopez, a system that often created discrepancies in records entered on a master list. Now, he says, there is “virtually 100% accuracy.”

 



While the software offers more features than currently needed within the inspection team, both Lopez and Flores say that GAGEpack met all their initial requirements, and as their equipment tracking needs become more sophisticated, they may need some of the advanced features found in GAGEpack.

In the meantime, the laboratory has saved time and improved efficiency and has demonstrated its commitment to science by addressing the challenge of gage management.

 



Benefits

• With GAGEpack, the inspection team can upload 2,000 items, adding custom builds and more customized inspection reports.

• Gages can be linked to other gages, and the inspection team is now getting real-time interpretation of data from gages.

• The laboratory has saved time and improved efficiency by addressing the challenge of gage management.