Exciting project for National Jet
A new instrument, IFU-M (‘Integral Field Units for Magellan’), is being built at the University of Michigan to be used on the powerful Magellan telescopes at Las Campanas Observatory in Chile (www.lco.cl). IFU-M is designed to allow astronomers to take spectra of an entire region of the sky simultaneously. Such spectra record the light from celestial sources as it is spread out into its constituent colors, allowing researchers to measure the internal motions, physical properties (temperatures, densities), and even chemical compositions of a wide variety of astronomical phenomena. In the case of IFU-M, the light from each region of the sky is directed to the spectrograph via optical fibers. These fibers must be positioned relative to the telescope and IFU-M fore-optics to an extremely high precision.
To do this, Dr. Mateo enlisted the help of our company, National Jet Co., to manufacture these optical fiber mounts (see slides 5 & 12 in the link below). The necessary precision of these parts guarantees the proper position of the fibers’ ends.
IFU-M should provide a great deal of new information about planets beyond our solar system, the distribution and nature of dark matter, how stars and galaxies form and evolve, and the properties of the young Universe!
COVID-19 Company Update
Amidst this unprecedented time, National Jet Co. will remain open while abiding by all necessary precautions. Our operating hours will remain unchanged; however, we will be accepting on-site visits by appointment only. Fortunately, our manufacturing processes are running smoothly, and we will continue working towards shipping out all orders as soon as possible. Our supply chains have also been largely unaffected, but we will continue to monitor this closely in the coming days and weeks.
In an effort to assist with some of the issues surrounding the COVID-19 virus, National Jet Company is pleased to announce that we have increased our capacity for melt blown die repairs as well as the production of new dies. For those who may not know, these die tips make the melt blown fiber which is used to manufacture the protective face masks that are used in the medical field. To carry out this plan, National Jet has added significant resources to our facility in an effort to reduce lead times for the repair, refurbishing, and re-sizing of holes in all the melt blown dies that we receive. With good planning, we are confident that we can turn around these repairs in a few days. National Jet Company is also fulfilling specialty nozzle orders for vendors who are involved in manufacturing respirators. We are giving priority to these orders and are rushing them through our manufacturing process.
It is our hope that in doing these things, we can help decrease the shortage of protective face masks caused by the COVID-19 virus, and provide nurses, doctors, and those affected with a means to stay safe!
New Technologies for NJC
We have added a lot of new equipment at National Jet Company over the last few years for both manufacturing and inspection. This year we have added two different “firsts” for us.
We recently purchased our first 3D printer. (Those that know us know that we have manufactured nozzles for 3D printers and other industries for a long time.) We expect to use it primarily for fixtures, holding devices, and set up pieces for jobs. But as many of you know, once you get a new tool in house, you find so many other uses that you never originally considered. We are all pretty excited about this new piece and looking forward to all of the new avenues that it opens up for us.
We also purchased our first robot. This tool has already paid big dividends for us. We make a lot of high precision parts that require detailed inspections. This robot has already been on jobs that load a part onto an inspection machine, inspects it and then puts the part in the pass or fail bin. (As you would suspect, we also have some pretty high tech inspection equipment.) We already have other work lined up for this robot which we expect will really help us with our efforts to reduce lead times.
We continue to add not just to our capacity but also to our capabilities. We expect to add even more in the near future!