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Just a Minute problem for the Mini Factory

Minis are classic cars that have never steered away from the limelight, and have generally always found a place in the hearts of driving enthusiasts around the world, with over a staggering 240,000 mini manufactured at the factory in Oxford.

With 240,000 Minis driving out of its doors every year, BMW’s Plant Oxford might well represent the pinnacle in car manufacturing but the downside is that technological advances in the automotive industry have resulted in electrical components which are sensitive to static charges.

So how does one minimise static build up and discharge most often caused by floor coverings on a busy production line?

BMW turned to global manufacturer of construction materials Sika for an anti-static flooring solution that would ensure this final assembly plant keeps on producing this iconic little car.

Sika and BMW have continually sought perfection in their products and forged their working relationship in the 1980’s when together they developed the first direct glazing adhesive for the M3, 3 and 5 Series cars.  More than twenty years later at the birthplace of the new Mini, BMW’s assembly management team has an on-going strategy for the improvement of their assembly process in one of the world’s most advanced production plants.

BMW had a requirement for a conductive floor system in the final stage assembly halls so Sika specified Sikafloor® 262 AS Thixo, a 2-part electrostatically conductive textured epoxy coating.  With good chemical and mechanical resistance, this slip resistant flooring system has an excellent reputation in industries where there is sensitive electronic equipment.

Specialist flooring contractor Zircon applied 13500 m² of Sikafloor® 262AS Thixo onto the existing epoxy system.  In order to provide minimum disruption to the manufacturing process on the assembly lines, this easy to install epoxy coating was installed on three separate visits.  After first removing any dust or loose material, Zircon used open cell rollers to spread the epoxy coating which was ready for foot traffic in only 24 hours.

The assembly halls at BMW Oxford now benefit from a thermostatically conductive flooring system which will ensure that the manufacturing facility is always on track to meet its target of building nearly 600 Minis every day.

Sika offers a comprehensive range of commercial & industrial flooring and coating products, designed for a variety of different applications and building or structure types. These solutions are backed up by a highly experienced technical team, who offer expert specification advice and support.

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