Home Manufacturing & Industry Inprotec installs industrial-scale lead melting plant for US manufacturer

Inprotec installs industrial-scale lead melting plant for US manufacturer

Wakefield-based Thermal and metallurgical engineering firm Inprotec has completed a six-figure contract to supply a major US manufacturer with a state-of-the-art lead melting plant.

The contract saw Inprotec design and install a new lead casting plant at NELCO Worldwide’s manufacturing facility in Houston, USA, where it produces medical and industrial radiation shielding.

The new plant was designed and installed over the course of 2020 and consists of three industrial-sized melting kettles where lead will be melted before it’s used by NELCO to create a range of radiation shielding products, including the lead doors and bricks used to encase the X-ray and radiology facilities commonly found in hospitals and medical centres.

It replaces the site’s previous plant and was commissioned to boost the company’s production capabilities, create a better working space for employees and reduce the company’s environmental footprint.


Its design and installation proved to be more than just a feat of engineering, with Inprotec’s team of skilled engineers using collaborative software to provide installation and commissioning supervision when it became apparent that they were unable to travel to Houston to do this due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Commenting on the project, Inprotec managing director Chris Oldroyd said:
“We’re delighted to have had the opportunity to support NELCO on this important project, drawing on our industry-leading capabilities and skills to create and install a state-of-the-art lead melting plant.

“We pride ourselves on delivering first-class customer support at every stage of the process, and that has never been more evident than on this project, with the team working remotely, but very closely, with NELCO operatives to ensure the plant is working exactly as it should.”

Gary Miller, executive VP and chief operating officer at NELCO Worldwide, said:
“Inprotec has proved to be the perfect partner, executing the contract flawlessly and delivering the project on-time and to the highest standards. Thanks to their support, we’re now looking forward to realising the many benefits that this new plant will bring to our facilities in Houston, from boosting our production capabilities through to further enhancing working conditions for our team.”

Established over 40 years ago, Inprotec designs, supplies and commissions thermal processing equipment for a growing portfolio of clients across multiple industries, from secondary and primary metal processing through to hazardous waste treatment. It operates globally to provide cost-effective and timely thermal and metallurgical solutions to some of the biggest companies in the world, such as Glencore, Teck and Johnson Matthey.

Earlier this year, Mr Oldroyd was appointed to the board of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3) Mining Technology Division (MTD).

The division is part of IOM3, a major UK science and engineering institution, and exists to support the mining and extractive industries worldwide by providing a focus for the promotion of, and exchange of knowledge on, all aspects of mine development, mine production, mine closure, mining technology and other mining industry-related matters.

The role sees Mr Oldroyd act as a key voice for professionals operating within the mining and extractive industries, exchanging ideas and information on key matters with a broad spectrum of organisations and policy advisors and creators in the UK and further afield.

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