The ECO Series: Meeting market demands with a new portable X-ray system

December 14, 2023

This year marked a significant milestone for Comet X-ray with the introduction of the ECO – a revolutionary series of lightweight portable X-ray systems. Rooted in our commitment to responsiveness, this journey began by listening to the genuine needs of our customers and the market. Join us as we take you behind the scenes, where the project team shares candid insights into the challenges they tackled during development.

At the core of our innovation journey lies a commitment to responsiveness – being in close contact with our customers and the market. The Comet X-ray team recognized the wish for lightweight portable X-ray systems, namely systems that could be handled by one single person. And so, they undertook a collaborative endeavor and created a transformative solution that redefines the landscape of portable X-ray systems.

Empowering individuals, enhancing workflows

Compliance with European laws, which require that one-person tools weigh no more than 15 kilograms, influenced the design philosophy (and presented challenges) for the ECO's lightweight construction. This reduction in weight doesn't just make it compliant; it revolutionizes the entire workflow, requiring less effort to handle and re-position, even for a single person.

The ECO Series

The ECO Series is a new product range of portable X-ray systems. It’s mainly used in the oil & gas and aerospace industry to inspect pipelines, welds, corrosions, or on-site service inspections on airplanes.

It's 9 kilograms lighter than its predecessor and can therefore be used as a one-person tool – creating smarter workflows for our customers.

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What customers say

«Getting to introduce the ECO series, featuring 200 kV with low weight, put us back in the driver's seat, so we've been looking forward to the ECO launch.»

Erlend Björkvold, Assistant Director 
Holger Hartmann Norway

«The ECO series represents a blend of Comet’s longstanding expertise in X-ray tubes and generators with their continual drive for innovation. It culminates in the ECO series – a dependable, effective, and lightweight product.»

Jérémy Fuentes, NDT Sales Manager
Carestream Non-Destructive Testing

«With the release of the ECO, Comet X-ray reacts to the market demands and delivers a low-weight portable X-ray system built on Comet technology and innovation.»

Paolo Casareale, Co-Owner
ADG S.r.l.

Learning from the field: Collaboration with customers

As the ECO became a reality, it became a testament to Comet's collaborative spirit, not merely meeting regulations but thriving within the user community. Field testing, an invaluable aspect of our development, involved close collaboration with end-users, refining the ECO for optimal performance in real-world applications: Inspecting welds, pipelines, or on-site service inspections on airplanes. Thanks to the important direct feedback, the development team was able to create a product that is optimized in every possible way.

«Thanks to our close relationships with end-users and customers, we got to understand the product’s strengths and weaknesses, and were able to make changes before we put it on the market.»

Jan Bressendorff, Product Manager Portables

A fusion of expertise

The collaborative synergy at Comet also presented itself in the development phase. The team worked in harmony to transform innovative ideas into a tangible reality and made sure to consider all perspectives: Thanks to an up and down feedback that allowed the team to learn from the production floor and management, all perspectives could be considered. Inputs from the assembly team in production for example, helped make the ECO more intuitive and easier to mass-produce.

Although the ECO was produced in Copenhagen, Denmark, engineers from both Copenhagen and Flamatt, Switzerland were involved in its creation.

Andreas Taarning, Technical Project Manager Portables, about the development of the ECO

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«The idea for the ECO's X-ray tube came up during a chat between an ambitious Product Manager and a creative Mechanical Design Engineer. Today, it's a reality, brought to life by our skilled international team.»

Arnaud Sottas, Product Manager Tubes, former Head of Design R&D

Navigating challenges: From theory to reality

The development journey of the ECO was not without its challenges. The biggest of them all was to reduce the weight from the original EVO’s 22 kilograms to 13 kilograms while still maintaining optimal cooling performance and X-ray output. The team navigated this challenge by bridging the gap between theory and reality.

«We used simulation to optimize our designs, and then we verified those designs using CAD. Finally, we conducted physical tests to ensure that our theoretical solutions held up in real-world conditions.»

Kenneth Mozer, Mechanical Engineer

Product design – function precedes form

The design of the ECO series was not solely dictated by the chosen material; opting for an all-black aesthetic was a deliberate decision to establish a unified and visually appealing look that seamlessly merged with functional requirements. This choice resulted from a close collaboration between engineering and marketing, emphasizing the integration of aesthetics with practical considerations. This played a pivotal role in ensuring that every design element contributed cohesively to both the product's visual identity and functional excellence.

«A well-functioning product affects brand perception, and when paired with sleek design and strategic marketing - good product design transcends visual appeal, user experience, ergonomics, and performance.»

David Campos, Senior Marketing Specialist

Looking ahead: The future of portable x-ray systems

As we celebrate the success of the ECO, the eyes of the team are already set on the future. We are committed to keep pushing the boundaries of X-ray technology and keep innovating to meet our customers’ needs.

The ECO project is a collaborative success story that reflects the power of teamwork and innovative thinking within Comet. By bridging the gap between theory and reality, learning from end-users, and envisioning the future of portable X-ray systems, our teams have not only improved a product but have opened doors to entirely new possibilities. This is a testament to the belief that curiosity, coupled with collaboration, can lead to groundbreaking innovations that reshape the future of technology.

For the last 75 years, we have followed our curiosity. It is what drives us and has made Comet a trailblazing global Swiss technology company. Curiosity and a spirit of research have allowed us to become and stay innovative. For a better and sustainable world.

Join us with your curiosity.

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