Kent County Times: Langevin tours company keeping manufacturing tradition alive

Kent County Times: Langevin tours company keeping manufacturing tradition alive

WEST WARWICK — Rhode Island Congressman Jim Langevin visited AstroNova Tuesday afternoon as part of his Rhode Island manufacturing tour. AstroNova, formerly Astro-Med, Inc. located on East Greenwich Avenue, is a data visualization technology firm global leader in developing and applying data visualization technologies in products serving industrial, packaging, aerospace, and the defense markets.

The company creates solutions that acquire, process, analyze, store, print, and present data in a variety of useable forms. These solutions are adapted specifically to customer requirements to enhance the quality, productivity, and profitability of their businesses. AstroNova has three branches including Test and Measurement, Aerospace and Quicklabels.

All AstroNova products are derived from its data visualization technology and are manufactured in its Rhode Island, Canada and Germany facilities. Direct sales and service centers are operated in the Unite States, Canada, Mexico, France, Germany, UK, China, Malysia and Singapore.
Because Langevin believes strongly in keeping the economy growing in the state through, in part, manufacturing, he felt is was important to include AstroNova as part of his tour. The company started out with producing data and measurement equipment then branched out into the printing areas.

Tom Carll, vice president and general manager for the aerospace area, explained that the company produces printers for air crafts that provide readouts for all the instrument data and area data necessary for a flight, which can be printed as well.

“Even with all this new technology of Ipads, etc, the pilots are still telling us that they like the information printed because they can have it right in front of them without scrolling through anything and the can write on it,” Carll said.

Carll added that much of their aerospace business come from Boeing, American Airlines and Delta.

“We’re in the process of creating a smaller printer so it can fit into smaller aircrafts,” he added.
Langevin was impressed with the work that goes on there as well as how the company has been able to grow and hopefully attract the younger people to join in the career.

“We always hear about the skills gap and I’m always looking for ways we can improve training systems for young folks who have recently graduated or before they graduate,” the Congressman said.

Woods said the company does work with students from University of Rhode Island and Brown University. Some of the companies they work with include Kimberly-Clark, General Motors, Raytheon, Panasonic and Boeing. They attribute their growth to their efficiency and product line expansions.