Microlution, Chicago manufacturer of Laser micromachines and a GF Machining Solutions company, recently celebrated an expansion that doubled its manufacturing production floor space. Located at 6629 W. Irving Park Rd., the company hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony during its first open house. The event was held in conjunction with parent company GF Machining Solutions' Solutions Days technology show at their headquarters in Lincolnshire.
Since its 2005 inception, Microlution has operated from several locations, moving to expand about every three years. Always in Chicago. Most recently the company operated solely the from 20,000 sq. ft. facility immediately next to this year’s 20,000 sq. ft. addition. Over 55 people are employed at this site currently, and there are plans to add more.
The new facility includes a new demonstration area, meeting rooms, and engineering stations. The other side-by-side facility is dedicated to producing the four lines of micromachines that produce tiny parts with high-precision features. Those parts go into a variety of products in industries such as medical, automotive, and aerospace.
Andy Phillip, Head of Laser Micromachining at Microlution, welcomed guests and shared the company’s past and future dedication to manufacturing and Chicago with an audience of customers and political dignitaries, including 38th Ward Alderman Nicholas Sposato during the opening ceremony.
“It is a very exciting day,” Phillip said. “Every time we have moved to a new facility, we have been absolutely bursting at the seams and needed to expand to further support our customers.”
Being acquired by Switzerland-based GF Machining Solutions just over three years ago, Phillip said, has given the company additional support for future growth, increased support for U.S. and international customers, and enough scheduling leeway to host functions like the recent open house.
Alderman Sposato said that Microlution is one of the few manufacturers located in the Dunning community.
“This area is mostly residential and smaller businesses,” said Sposato. “Microlution being here is great for the community and helps further boost the district’s commercial vitality.”
Event guests viewed the ribbon cutting ceremony, toured the production facility, heard a customer presentation from Matthew Lewis, a diffusion bonding engineer at Agilent Technologies Inc. who described how his company and Microlution worked together to customize a machine to meet their company requirements, and watched machine demonstrations.
The Microlution Laser Micromachining systems shown included:
- ML-5: three- or five-axis to produce small parts used in many industries
- ML-10: five-axis cutting and shaping that focuses on needs of the aerospace industry
- MLDS: multi-stationed and tailored for nozzle drilling for the automotive industry
- MTLC: processes very small tube stock for the medical industry
Each Microlution machine is customized to the customer’s specific needs. Often those satisfying special requests leads to the development of new equipment capabilities.
"In addition to the Chicago team," Phillip said, “We have a great team in Switzerland, around the world, and in Lincolnshire that is continuing to support the development and growth of the company.”