100 Year Milestone For AvK
By Ian Cameron26 July 2019
A leading alternator maker is celebrating its centenary this year.
Cummins Generator Technologies [CGT], which designs and manufactures a range of alternators from 0.6 to 11,200kVA under the STAMFORD and AvK product brands, can trace its lineage back to the earliest days of the 20th century with its German alternator product line.
The AvK business began in 1919, as a trading enterprise for electrical machines, named after its founder, Mr Arthur van Kaick. AvK grew quickly during the 1920s and 1930s with the development of special electrical windings to solve the problems of power generation and transmissions across Germany.
By the 1930s, it had diversified from electrical engineering to alternator production, with AvK innovating the world’s first self-regulating alternator in 1938.
AvK patented and began producing self-regulating alternator inventions, while ingenuity was also seen in the rotating field alternator series introduced by the UK counterpart in the same decade.
With its German heritage from Frankfurt to Ingolstadt, the AvK business was then established in 1999 in Craiova, Romania which is the sole manufacturing facility for this brand of alternators. Under full ownership of Cummins Generator Technologies, the Craiova facility has benefitted from €30 million of investment, including €12 million since 2013 for capacity expansion. The site currently employs over 700 people and has shipped more than 8,000 alternators in the past 15 years. In 2016 the AvK brand achieved UL certification for all voltage ranges.
CGT represents the fusion of two of innovators in alternators and electrical engineering – AvK and Stamford Electrical. The two companies may have begun under different directives – UK based Stamford Electrical, as it would become known before becoming Newage, founded by the Cutting Brothers in its namesake town in 1904 and AvK, yet their formative years soon established that their paths ran parallel.
With six manufacturing plants in the CGT global manufacturing network, AvK products are only manufactured at their Romanian plant in Craiova, which has become a centre for manufacturing large alternators following investment in advanced processes and testing facilities. The company also has facilities in India and China. The photo shows the Craiova facility.