The U.S. does not shy away from new technologies and innovations. With a strong innovative culture, the country was early adopters of commercial aeroplanes and the pioneer of futuristic, more capable warships.
Analysis by PWC found that the U.S. spends the most on research and development globally, signalling the nation’s commitment to being at the forefront of technology. With businesses calling for innovation and advancement daily, test systems have become increasingly valuable, as it is a crucial step in the product development phase to prove equipment readiness and provide confidence for future field operations.
A test system helps create an artificial environment to test and verify equipment in conditions that mirror the final surroundings intended for the product. They are used to ensure longevity and endurance. This is a key part of the innovation process, as not only do test systems bring out potential faults from the offset and reduce possibility of breakdown within the creation process, but they also further strengthen our understanding of how to optimize product performance. This, in turn, increases efficiency and avoids unnecessary costs in the field.
The U.S. market, traditionally, has had a strong focus on military, navy and aviation applications. These are the industries that have zero tolerance for equipment failure and set some of the highest requirements for assets’ reliability and availability. Therefore, these three sectors would require intensive and specialist testing—flexible, high-power and high-speed testing environments, and consequently, need large-scale and experienced test system providers in order to manage the capacity required.
Due to the product development cycle, it is usually a luxury for businesses to have a standalone testing department. Therefore, the best option for most businesses is to establish a long-term partnership with a company that can act as a strategic arm for testing.
A lack of industry-wide standardization means that test bench partners need to stay flexible, with enough experience in multiple markets to adapt to customer needs. GE’s Power Conversion, for example, has a long track record of testing experience in markets all around the world. Through the close collaboration with the customer throughout the life cycle of a test system, we provide highly customized test system solutions that are best designed to test the required products.
While being able to adapt to and fulfill customer needs is a strength of GE, another competitive advantage is that GE is also the equipment provider. This means we know the products inside out and are able to rigorously test components to the extreme—safely and efficiently. It simplifies the customer experience by working with one single company that has solid knowledge both in the equipment and testing.
As innovation in America continues to proliferate, GE is committed to helping turn on lightbulbs—both metaphorically and physically—and while the test system is only one part of this, it’s a crucial one, which cannot be overlooked.
Author: Sascha Heinecke, industry segment leader, GE’s Power Conversion