The 2020 Romar Engineering Wrap

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Challenging is perhaps the most common descriptive for 2020 around the globe. While it has been a difficult year for many in the manufacturing sector, Romar Engineering has been fortunate to retain our team and emerge stronger and even more focused on delivering our first-class manufacturing solutions for clients in the aerospace, medical, mining and defence sectors.

As the year draws to a close, we wanted to provide an update on our activities in 2020 – and how these have put us in a good position to provide outstanding customer solutions in 2021.

From COVID-19 to incredible collaborations, here’s what the Romar team accomplished in 2020.

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Working through COVID-19

Like all businesses, Romar felt the impact of COVID-19, particularly in the early months. We already had facilities in place – including a Class 8 Clean Room – that are ideal to minimise potential infection, and we implemented a range of additional steps to minimise staff interaction.

With globally recognised expertise, our team is central to our manufacturing solutions, so holding on to our people was a top priority. Thanks to niche capability and agility across diverse industries plus shift flexibility, we were very fortunate to retain our entire team – which has emerged stronger and more cohesive.

We also added to our team. Jag Sury joined us as a Business Development Executive just prior to last Christmas. We appointed former intern, Morgan Wagner, as a Manufacturing Engineer in March, and we recently welcomed a new intern from Macquarie University, Hayden McLaughlin.

Man holding a molded steel

Soaring with new technology

Romar has been at the forefront of high quality and cutting-edge manufacturing for decades, and in 2020 we provided several tailored manufacturing solutions using our Australian-only Lasertec 65 3D printer.

After very positive collaborations in aerospace and other sectors, we’re now looking to expand our advanced manufacturing capability still further. In March 2021, Romar will take receipt of a Concept Laser M2 Series 5, a Direct Metal Laser Melting (DMLM) machine from GE Additive, designed and optimised in partnership with GE Aviation. We’ll have it operational and ready for new projects by the end of April.

With both the Lasertec 65 and Concept Laser M2, we’ll be in a unique position to provide innovative and industry-leading additive manufacturing solutions.


Aerospace advanced manufacturing collaborations

This year Romar began working with Gilmour Space Technologies, a Queensland-based company that specialises in new space technologies, with a focus on launch rockets powered by lower-cost hybrid propulsion technologies.

After discussions with the Gilmour team, Romar is now manufacturing fluid components for Gilmour’s low-orbit hybrid propulsion launch rocket, a vehicle capable of delivering payloads of up to 250 kg into low Earth orbits (LEO).

Gilmour was just one of several exciting collaborations we undertook this year, partnering our unique advanced manufacturing capability with like-minded innovative manufacturing partners.


Strengthening industry connections

In 2020, Romar began work to become an ANSTO industry partner. ANSTO is Australia’s Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation and one of our largest public research establishments. It regularly partners with scientists and engineers from both academia and industry on projects across health, the environment and other areas.

Romar team members – Founder Neil Wilson, CEO Alan Lipman and Steve Milanoski, Head of Advanced Manufacturing – visited ANSTO to discuss potential project collaboration. “We talked capability,” explains Alan, “both our capabilities and theirs, and how we can collaborate using the experience and facilities that we both have.”

ANSTO has state of the art facilities and we now have access to ANSTO’s cutting-edge HIP (hot isostatic press) technology, which we’re using to investigate new material and molding potential. We envision it will be the first of several projects together.

In recent news, we also signed a Letter of Intent with the NSW Government and we plan to play a role in the Aerotropolis’ Advanced Manufacturing Research Facility (AMRF) currently in development in Western Sydney. It will be a hub for exceptional aerospace, defence and medical manufacturing. As Alan Lipman explains:

This is an exciting opportunity for Romar to pass on our knowledge and experience in Advanced Manufacturing around our 3D metal printing technology. We want to grow the Advanced Manufacturing skills base in this country and collaborating with the development of the AMRF is the best way to do this.

Award-winning medical projects

Romar has long specialised in medical grade silicone and medical device manufacturing, and this year we showcased our capability with several collaborative projects.

Most recently, we were delighted to be appointed the manufacturing partner for Rapid Repair, a NASA award-winning medical device developed by Southern Cross University’s Dr Rosemary Craig and Dr Nedeljka Rosic, with business partner Gerard Criss. It’s a silicone wound dressing that is non-toxic, non-invasive and holds enormous potential to drastically reduce skin healing time and lessen scarring in both humans and animals.

In other projects, we are manufacturing a critical component for an international award-winning and state-of-the-art 3D bioprinting device called RASTRUM, devised by Inventia Life Science; and we are a commercialisation partner for Nutromics in the development of a non-invasive, wearable technology device to monitor the effect of lifestyle choices in diet and exercise on health, using cutting-edge micro-manufacturing techniques.

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Showcasing our specialist expertise

Romar was in the news this year. In February an article in Manufacturers’ Monthly highlighted our industry-leading expertise and advanced manufacturing capability, we featured in the October/November issue of Australian Manufacturing Technology (AMT) journal, published by AMTIL, and we were part of the 2020 issues of leading annual industry magazine, Space OUTLOOK.

Each article showcased our diverse manufacturing capability from medical device manufacturing to silicone to our additive manufacturing technology that is unique to Australia.

While Romar has close to half a century of manufacturing experience, we’ve continually expanded our expertise to ensure we remain at the forefront of Australian manufacturing and we are now firmly positioned to offer innovative manufacturing solutions for sectors including aerospace, mining and defence.

If you have a project in need of a robust, commercial manufacturing solution, please contact us.

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