Sheffield Forgemasters installed the U.K.’s largest five-axis vertical turning lathe (VTL) as part of a $7.9 million upgrade to its machining facilities. The project will improve capacity and throughput for complicated machining requirements. Weighing almost 250 metric tons, the VTL was manufactured by Spanish company BOST. It has a maximum machining height of 13 feet (4 meters), maximum swing diameter of 28 feet (8.5 meters) and a table weight capacity of 100 metric tons.

David Bond, Sheffield Forgemasters’ CEO, said: “We were delighted to commission this new facility, which marks a step-change in our capacity to deliver advanced manufacturing techniques. The improvement of our machining facilities is of interest to customers such as those in the defense industry, as it has superior accuracy and will significantly reduce lead times on delivery for crucial components both for the U.K. and U.S. submarine programs.”

According to Sheffield Forgemasters, the new VTL will also have significant implications for the machining of domed or cylindrical components such as those required in the civil nuclear power market and pressure vessel markets.