About Group HES

Group HES is a specialist in hydraulic component and systems supply. The company enjoys an excellent reputation for the design, manufacture, installation and servicing of critical and complex bespoke hydraulic and control solutions. Built on over 50 years of trading expertise, their five trading entities work in collaboration to achieve bespoke fluid power solutions for customers and industry.

The opportunity

In 2016, Branch Hydraulic Systems (BHS), part of Group HES became aware of a potential contract with Galliford Try (GT), a major contractor building the new Airbus Wing Integration Centre (AWIC) project at Filton, near Bristol. This new facility is supported by the Aerospace technology Institute (ATI), Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and Innovate UK. The contract was to supply, build and install the hydraulic ring main system which provides a solid power supply for the sophisticated test equipment that is at the heart of this new facility. BHS was interested in developing the capability to offer large bore pipework installations, a key element of the GT contract and many other opportunities across industry with only one other main competitor in the market supplying pipework of this size. Moreover, it would also complement their current site service offering, enabling the company to generate additional business.

A key facilitator to success

Parker is one of the world's largest manufacturers of motion and control technologies, part of their product portfolio is an innovative large bore piping range. Leveraging their long-standing supply relationship, BHS secured an agreement with Parker to fabricate large bore pipework alongside their own brand which is modelled on Parker's impressive non-weld Complete Piping Solution (CPS). Following a successful tender process, BHS won the contract with GT and work started to build the first UK Parker Piping Centre at the Group HES site in Gloucester.

Combining expertise

The Airbus project involves system design, manufacture of hydraulic power packs, design and development of control software systems, electrical and control panels, onsite installation and commissioning of over 1km of pipework. With wide-ranging engineering capability across Group HES, BHS was well positioned to take on the contract. Group HES's previous investment in 3D CAD was invaluable in this project, as they can easily plan, design and manage the process. In addition, sister company HES Automatec created the software in-house, using a National Instruments product, that runs the Parker variable speed drives, as well as developing sophisticated data acquisition systems. To ensure manufacture is in accordance with Parker's stringent quality and safety protocol, a period of intense training was undertaken both in Germany with the Parker team and at our Gloucester operation.

The future of the piping centre

Parker's high-performance pipe flaring technology represents the very latest in non-weld technology, surpassing current weld options and is interchangeable with standard industry systems, for a clean, reliable and leak-free piping system. Group HES aims to nurture its ongoing partnership with Parker, taking advantage of the limited competition in the market.