Recab, a supplier of advanced modularised computer systems

Recab

Recab, a supplier of advanced modularised computer systems, has seen collaboration with ESS as both a challenge and a learning opportunity, but also as a source of profitable business. Working with ESS has not been like supplying to an industrial client. Technical demands have been higher, system requirements have been more complex, and public procurement processes have been more demanding than industrial purchasing, but the work put in has been worthwhile in many ways.

Working with clients is all about matching expectations. Working with ESS is no exception.

“Working with clients is all about matching expectations. Working with ESS is no exception. The system owners and users at ESS come from research backgrounds, so their expectations are sometimes different to those of industrial clients. Once you understand this, and adapt accordingly, the collaboration becomes very rewarding,” explains Engineering Director Brian Ulskov Sørensen.

Many different clients

Recab supplies the mTCA.4 equipment used in automation. The company had already supplied equipment to the earlier MAX I, II, and III laboratories at Lund University and, more recently, the company has supplied the framework for the control system for MAX IV. These earlier projects gave valuable experience
of public procurements.

The first meetings between Recab and ESS were held in 2012. Once RECAB had been awarded a contract, they could start activities together with users of the mTCA.4 systems. The system owners are the Integrated Control Systems Group, which is responsible for the system infrastructure and functionality. They also handle support and maintenance of the system.

“One of the big differences in working with ESS compared to industrial clients, is that at ESS we work with many different clients. We’ve not only been working with both users and owners, Lund University has also been involved, which has added complexity to the project,” says Sørensen.

Big Science offers interesting opportunities for expansion. The projects are often challenging and complex. Every new client whose demands are as high and complex as those of MAX IV and ESS brings interesting challenges and learning opportunities. Working with MAX IV and ESS has entailed excellent learning experiences that open up market opportunities with other facilities in Europe. “I think that MAX IV and ESS are just the start of our business with Big Science. Now that we have more experience, we’re ready to compete for contracts at more European facilities,” says Sørensen.