AirBench Ltd are the UK’s leading manufacturer of downdraught benches and cross draught extraction systems. The company has more than 10,000 extraction systems in service in the UK and overseas. Along with their range of coolant mist filters and air cleaning systems, they are actively helping businesses across many industries solve their workplace dust and fume issues. Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company? AIRBENCH: As a company we cater to such an eclectic array of industries with some of the main activity seen in the Aerospace, Composite, Machining, Stone Masonry and Fabrication sectors. We are lucky that customers tend to find us – and we can say with confidence that we have equipment in almost every major manufacturer in the UK. We are also fortunate to supply almost every F1 team, and have some major projects under way in this sector at present. We are seeing a large increase in the popularity of our cross draught extraction booths based on the VertEx range which create a negative pressure area for optimum dust or fume extraction. Airbench has also grown its Mist extraction in the past few years as well as improving and designing existing and new products continuously. E.E: What’s the news for 2021 about new products? AIRBENCH: We have 3 new product ranges in our plan for this year. Covid has not helped with product development and the focus has been on keeping staff safe and servicing existing customers over the last year but product development has come back into focus over recent months. Unfortunately, we don’t have any new ranges we can tell you about until they’re ready to release! E.E: What are the ranges of products? AIRBENCH: Our range of products come in three main categories: Our Airbenches; which are downdraught extraction benches for Dust and Fume extraction. We have the largest range of any manufacturer, and have sold over 15000 AirBenches across the UK and Europe;Vertex cross-draught units; for larger-scale extraction of Dust and Fume. These units are also modular and can be built up and bolted together to create a booth. Our booth can be as small at 1.2m wide x 1m deep with our largest to date being 8m wide x 6m deep;Our coolant mist filter range consisting of AOF machine-mount units, or OMF central systems. Coolant mist extraction is a focus in the UK at present and the AOF range is proving increasingly popular. We also offer complimentary products such as the BD blowdown bench for removal of coolant and swarf from machined parts, or the DF downflow unit which is a tabletop extraction system. Finally, we manufacture a range of air cleaners, which simple run in the background and filter the air in your workshop. We also offer ATEX version of certain units, which helps us support some interesting customers in the aerospace sector. E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active? AIRBENCH: We are primarily dust and fume extraction manufacturers. This is a mature market; it’s also quite a small niche, despite the requirement for dust extraction in almost every manufacturing industry. Manufacturers tend to work together where required, and have personal relationships with both customers and competitors. It’s a good industry to be in. As far as our customers go, we work in every industry from stone masonry and other ancient trades, through to 3d printing and additive manufacturing – our equipment is used to manufacture replacement parts for the Elizabeth Tower (Big Ben) and for the F35 Lightning II fighter jet so really our customers are as diverse as can be! E.E: What can you tell us about market trends? AIRBENCH: Obviously the last year has been difficult. In troubled times, though, we see an increase in entrepreneurial activity – more new businesses, more new projects. This ends up being a positive for us. E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed? AIRBENCH: Many of our products are (in simple terms) very well established. However, we are making continuous steps forward in ease of use and filtration technology, assisted by our filtration manufacturer partners. E.E: What estimations do you have for 2021? AIRBENCH: We estimate 2021 to be a year of design and product development as well as further growth into the UK’s thriving industries as well as spreading the awareness, products and service of AirBench even further internationally. We have new distributors in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and more to come on stream in coming months – and as worldwide travel comes back to life we hope this will continue to develop.