Barber-Nichols' founders, Bob Barber and Ken Nichols, cut the cake at the company's 40th anniversary celebration. Barber and Nichols met while both were employed at Hamilton Sundstrand, decided to go into business for themselves in 1966, and specialized in turbine engineering. Since that time, the company has grown to 61 employees, has fully integrated engineering and manufacturing facilities, and works in a variety of industries including aeronautics, cryogenics, national defense, power generation, and space flight. In an impromptu speech Nichols said, "I get the most pride from the fact that this company provides good stable jobs where people are able to grow, take risks, and make a difference. This company truly values its people."
Today Barber-Nichols Inc. (BNI) is an internationally recognized leader in the designing, engineering, manufacturing, and testing of specialty turbomachinery. Products include blowers, compressors, fans, pumps, turbines, and turbopumps. In addition to custom hardware, BNI also provides engineering consulting and contract manufacturing. BNI's very first project was the testing of a low-speed, two-stage steam turbine for the U.S. Navy's Applied Research Laboratory. To this day, Turbine Development continues to be a Barber-Nichols specialty. Next, BNI designed and built an extremely quiet, 10kW, portable power generation system for the U.S. Army. This power system was based on the Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC), and this would become a cornerstone technology at Barber-Nichols. It is still used to harness industrial waste heat and turn it into Electrical Power. In 1974, Barber-Nichols designed and built its first Cryogenic Pump for the National Bureau of Standards (now the National Institute of Standards and Technology) and most recently, BNI has entered the space launch industry with a strong focus on rocket engine turbopumps.
Today Barber is retired from the company, spends much of his time volunteering with charitable and non-profit organizations, and travels the world photographing wildlife and landscapes (Barber Nature Photography). Nichols continues working for the company part-time and focuses on technically challenging projects. And during his time off he enjoys bicycle tours in Europe and spending time in Aspen, Colorado.
- 2013 Vendor Appreciation Party
- Barber-Nichols Awarded Air Turbine Assembly Manufacturing Contract For U.S. Navy's Virginia Class Submarine Fleet
- Barber-Nichols Awarded LNG Vapor Return Compressor Contract
- Barber-Nichols Celebrates 40th Anniversary
- Barber-Nichols Completes Construction Of A New Assembly And Testing Laboratory
- Barber-Nichols Featured In The April 2005 Issue of Aerospace Colorado
- Barber-Nichols Takes Delivery Of Five-Axis Machining Center
- Barber-Nichols Using Composite Materials In A Cryogenic Pump To Increase Pump Efficiency And Reduce Conductive Heat Leak
- Congressman Bob Beauprez Recognizes Barber-Nichols For Its Work With The United States Navy
- NASA's Kennedy Space Center Recognizes Barber-Nichols For The Development of Highly Reliable Liquid Oxygen Pumps
- Rocketdyne Propulsion And Power Recognizes Barber-Nichols For Providing Top Quality Hardware Used On The RS-68 Engine
- Step-By-Step Tutorial For Measuring Output Voltage From A VFD To A Motor
- Supercritical CO2 Brayton Cycle Test Loop Shipping To Sandia Nat'l Laboratories
- TAS Energy Wins 2012 Excellence in Renewable Energy Award for Geothermal Project of the Year
- Turbopumps Supplied By Barber-Nichols Power Falcon 9 Into Orbit