Navaids-driven boost for Irish manufacturing

Mon, 04 January 2016

Irish company JFC Manufacturing has announced details of a new range of polyethylene buoys, at the ‘Innovating the future of Marine Navigation Safety’ conference in Galway in October. The buoys are being produced by the company’s new division, JFC Marine.

The JFC Manufacturing Group, currently employing 240, with annual turnover in the region of €50m, is headquartered in Tuam, Co. Galway with facilities in UK, Poland, South Africa and Holland, and is traditionally known for plastics manufacturing and agricultural products. The company will be marketing its new range consisting of AtoNs (aids to navigation), Marine Marker Buoys, Solar Marine Lanterns as well as data monitoring and control systems for marine applications. 

“In the region of 15 to 20 new jobs will be created in the next couple of years, people with expertise in engineering and research and development in particular. Following several million euros of investment over the last few years in research and development of these products, we are optimistic about the opportunities in this market. The marine navigation aids and market buoy market is a new sector for us, our products have been well received and we have been able to compete on price, quality and novel design. We are always happy to announce the creation of new jobs, as we know how valuable this is to the local economy,” commented John Concannon, MD, JFC Manufacturing.

The marine navigation buoys which range in height from 2 m to 10m high, are being manufactured in JFC’s Galway factory. Having successfully trialled and tested the JFC Marine range, these are now in use by mariners, coast guards, major port authorities in Denmark, Norway throughout Europe and as far away as Cameroon. The company offers a complete range of polyethylene navigation buoys/ lanterns, monitoring and control systems to suit all marine applications. These products are successfully being used to mark out shipping channels, hazardous waters, aquaculture sites and a variety of other marine installations.

“With our new buoy design and with the advances in technology we are now capable of adding new technologies and sensors to our buoys to provide real-time information to pilots at sea, information such as wave height, wind speed and water currents. This gives the pilots more control on the shipping vessel and will contribute to the safe transport of imports and export,” stated Colin Concannon, Head of Sales, JFC Marine.

The buoys were officially launched at the recent ‘Innovating the future of Marine Navigation Safety’ conference. The aim of the conference was to bring those working in the marine sector together, from port authorities to those involved in aquaculture, in particular those responsible for the safety of marine navigation and to discuss future advances that are needed to increase navigation safety and to highlight the value of adopting new technologies. The event was organised in conjunction with international experts – Carmanah Sabik along with Commissioners of Irish Lights, Smart Bay Ireland Ltd. and Geo-Mara. 

JFC’s developments have been supported by Enterprise Ireland.

Source: Jake Frith

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