A global component manufacturer is hoping a system it devised to measure its products may become an industry-wide standard after being used by one of the most famous scientific facilities in the world.

Graphskill, in Cleator Moor, makes pipe supports such as clamps, clips and u-bolts, which have applications in sectors including the nuclear, pharmaceutical and petrochemical industries in 76 countries around the world.

"We manufacture mainly metal pipe supports specialising in stainless steel. However, we do them in all types of metals and polymers which are used in the pipe work industry," said managing director Martin Statter.

However, he said there is no international standard for the size of pipe componentry, which can lead to confusion.

"In the industry there are a number of standard components manufactured and identified to individual manufacturers’ part numbers with most pipe work engineers setting their own standards on each new project," he said.

The company had developed a code which it named the Standard Universal Measuring System, or SUMS, to give people clarity about the size of its products.

The code can be applied to either off-the-shelf products or to specify bespoke orders for parts.

However, it was only when they received an enquiry from CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, based in Geneva, Switzerland, that he realised a senior technician there was using it to design parts as well.

CERN is the largest particle physics laboratory in the world and is famously home to the Large Hadron Collider used in the search for the Higgs Boson.

"Part of the enquiry stated the components required as Graphskill’s SUMS which was assumed to have been copied from our website," said Martin.

"However, when the component could not be found on the system it was realised that the senior technician involved in the enquiry had made up his own code using Graphskill SUMS."

Martin said ultimately he hoped that SUMS would be adopted more widely as a way of standardising the industry.

"It's early days, but it's a step in the right direction," he said.

"We would like to think that we've cut out a lot of problems by having this standard code.

"To have such a respected organisation appreciate the advantages of our coding system is flattering.

"Many of our existing clients have already adopted our coding system.

"However, when cutting edge technological organisations accept it, we know we have something to build upon."

Graphskill, which was founded in1976, has supplied all industrial sectors during its 43 year history.

It manufactures supports used in diverse projects including the building of the new aircraft carriers.

Most of the traffic controls on our Britain's roads also have Graphskill components inside the control boxes.

It has recently moved into newly developed offices at its site at Birks Road.

"We have extended the footprint of the building to increase manufacturing capacity and made it a lot more prestigious," said Martin.

It has also been granted planning permission for an improved facilities block for staff and new raw material storage area, which it is hoped will be started before the end of the year.