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Trumpf charters deep-sea container ship to beat international delivery crisis

03 Aug 2022

Forty-nine laser cutting machines were last week loaded in Hamburg – set for delivery in New York by mid-August.

At the moment, a perfect storm of fragile supply chains, the war in Ukraine, and port closures in China due to the continuing Covid-19 pandemic, are making it difficult to transport goods by sea. This problem also applies to shipping goods to the USA. Logistics costs are rising, and ships can often wait for weeks outside of ports to be loaded and unloaded.

Technology and laser giant Trumpf has therefore decided to overcome the problems with an approach that it describes as “something special”. The company, headquartered in Ditzingen, near Stuttgart, is one of Germany's largest transporters of oversized cargo to the USA. With annual sales of €655 million, the USA is Trumpf’s second-largest sales market, and despite all of the current challenges, the US economy is booming, says the company.

Trumpf believes it is one of the first industrial companies in Germany to charter its own deep-sea container ship through a logistics company. Heavy-duty cranes recently loaded the ship with 49 laser cutting machines and production parts in the port of Hamburg. The container ship is scheduled to arrive in New York in mid-August.

Since the ship does not call at the usual distribution terminals along the way, long waiting times at those ports will be avoided. The laser machines will thus reach their destination up to four weeks faster than by conventional sea carriers, says the firm.

Trumpf and Cellforce form e-vehicle battery partnership

Trumpf and Cellforce, a manufacturer of battery cells for electromobility solutions, have entered into a strategic partnership.

“Our goal is to produce one of the most powerful battery cells in the world,” said Dr. Markus Gräf COO of Cellforce Group, a joint venture between auto-maker Porsche AG and Customcells Holdings. The battery maker will use Trumpf lasers to produce lithium-ion cells.

Cellforce's production facility, which is currently under construction near Reutlingen, just south of Stuttgart, where Trumpf is headquartered, is scheduled to go into operation in 2024 with an initial capacity of at least 100 MWh per year. That is equivalent to high-performance battery cells for around 1,000 vehicles.

Lasers crucial for battery production

Trumpf Laser Technology CEO Dr. Christian Schmitz commented, “The laser is the decisive tool for efficient production of battery cells, without which e-mobility would really not be possible.”

There are currently more than 30 different laser applications in the production of the cells. Trumpf has been involved in electromobility from the very beginning and works with all major cell manufacturers. In 2021 alone, it sold more than a thousand lasers to be used in the production of electric vehicles.

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