Company History

NDT Specialists since 1965 | Orbit NDT

Orbit Industries was founded in 1965 by James Clemons and a group of NDT experts with a commitment to excellence in Ultrasonic, Magnetic Particle, Liquid Penetrant, and Radiographic inspection techniques. The company operated out of two facilities in greater Cleveland until 1974 when they consolidated the two facilities, eliminated the Radiographic department, and moved the operations to Middleburg Heights, Ohio.

In 1979, the company was purchased by Robert Smetana, Dan Druso, and our current CEO, John Alexandrovic. Business expanded rapidly and the company outgrew its Middleburg Heights facility. A new building was added nearby in 1982. Operating from two locations, though only a few hundred yards apart, proved to be too cumbersome. An addition to the building at 6840 Lake Abram Drive was added in 1985 to increase the facility to its current size of 70,000 square feet; thus consolidating all operations under one roof. In 1992, Robert Smetana divested his ownership of the company through the sale of his interests to his daughters, Mary and Therese Smetana, and John Alexandrovic. John Alexandrovic assumed the title of President of the company at that time. In July of 2001, John Alexandrovic led a buyout of the Smetana family interests and continued in his role of President and Chief Executive Officer. Robert Aleksandrovic rejoined Orbit Industries in 2002 as an owner and its Chief Operating Officer.

Image of Orbit Industries building | Orbit Industries


Since 2002, Orbit has been aggressively investing in our number one capital, our people. Through consistent training and coaching we are cultivating what we believe is the finest Nondestructive Testing workforce in the industry. The expertise of our personnel can largely be attributed to our commitment to continuous improvement and willingness to challenge ourselves monthly in all facets of professional development.

Our customer focus has been simple; work to derive the supply chain needs of our customer base and execute testing solutions that provide the best quality, lead time, and price. Through our customer engagement, Orbit is fostering partnerships and relationships that cross traditional manufacturing barriers and will sustain our organization for future generations. We are built on a foundation of integrity, quality and excellence in customer service. It is this foundation that ensures our customers of today and tomorrow that they can “Send it into Orbit” with total confidence. 

 
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1965

Orbit Industries is established on June 1st, 1965. The original building, at 3841 Ridge Road, was 5,000 square feet for all operations.Eight founding members:James...
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Orbit Industries Established, Brooklyn, Ohio

Orbit Industries is established on June 1st, 1965. The original building, at 3841 Ridge Road, was 5,000 square feet for all operations.

Eight founding members:

  • James Clemons - Majority owner with working knowledge but no NDT certifications
  • Robert Smetana - Ultrasonic Level III
  • Glen Pont - Ultrasonic Level III
  • Walt Skerich - Radiography
  • Joseph Kokish - Radiography
  • Gary Brandon - Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant
  • Alfred Ruprecht -Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant
  • Georgia Brandon - Office Manager

1966

A second building was purchased, at 3530 Ridge Road in Brooklyn, Ohio. This 7,000 square foot building housed the Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant...
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Second Building Purchased

A second building was purchased, at 3530 Ridge Road in Brooklyn, Ohio. This 7,000 square foot building housed the Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant departments, while Radiography and Ultrasonic testing were still being done in the original 5,000 square foot facility.

1967

During 1967 through 1970, Orbit started gaining major Prime Approvals in Ultrasonic, Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant. This was largely facilitated...
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Prime Approvals

During 1967 through 1970, Orbit started gaining major Prime Approvals in Ultrasonic, Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant. This was largely facilitated by the company's strong relationship with Cleveland Pneumatic Company.

1970

Radiography services were relocated to a customer facility. Subsequently, the Ultrasonic department was moved to the 7,000 square foot facility.
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Radiography Operations Relocated

Radiography services were relocated to a customer facility. Subsequently, the Ultrasonic department was moved to the 7,000 square foot facility.

1972

Walt Skerich and Joe Kokish took ownership of all Radiography, Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant operations being conducted off-site in exchange for...
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Change in Ownership

Walt Skerich and Joe Kokish took ownership of all Radiography, Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant operations being conducted off-site in exchange for shares of Orbit.

In this same year, Gary and Georgia Brandon left the company, leaving James Clemons, Glen Pont, Al Ruprecht, and Robert Smetana as owners. It was at this time that the customer base began diversifying by adding commercial and nuclear business.

1973

Glen Pont left the business, leaving James Clemons, Bob Smetana, and Al Ruprecht as owners.
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Change in Ownership

Glen Pont left the business, leaving James Clemons, Bob Smetana, and Al Ruprecht as owners.

1974

First building in Middleburg Heights built - 20,000 square feetAutomated wheel inspection system is installed for Alcoa workIncrease in nuclear tube business
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New Facility Built

  • First building in Middleburg Heights built - 20,000 square feet

  • Automated wheel inspection system is installed for Alcoa work

  • Increase in nuclear tube business

1976

Built 2,000 square foot addition to the Middleburg Heights facilityAdded gridning of forgings for Sifco and other customers
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Addition to building

  • Built 2,000 square foot addition to the Middleburg Heights facility

  • Added gridning of forgings for Sifco and other customers

1978

Bob Smetana bought out James Clemons, leaving Bob and Al Ruprecht as sole owners.
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James Clemons Buyout

  • Bob Smetana bought out James Clemons, leaving Bob and Al Ruprecht as sole owners.

1979

John Alexandrovic and Dan Druso purchase 50% of Al Ruprecht's company shares.
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Al Ruprecht Sells 50% of Shares

John Alexandrovic and Dan Druso purchase 50% of Al Ruprecht's company shares.

1980

A 2nd building in Middleburg Heights was constructed - 30,000 square feetThe 22,000 square foot building continued to house Ultrasonic plate inspection...
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2nd Middleburg Heights Facility Built

  • A 2nd building in Middleburg Heights was constructed - 30,000 square feet

  • The 22,000 square foot building continued to house Ultrasonic plate inspection and Liquid Penetrant Automotive inspection.

  • All other operations were moved to the new building

1981

Al Ruprecht retires, leaving Bob Smetana, John Alexandrovic, and Dan Druso as shareholders.
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Al Ruprecht Retires

Al Ruprecht retires, leaving Bob Smetana, John Alexandrovic, and Dan Druso as shareholders.

1983

Dan Druso leaves Orbit. John Alexandrovic and Bob Smetana assume sole ownership. 
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Dan Druso Leaves Orbit

Dan Druso leaves Orbit. John Alexandrovic and Bob Smetana assume sole ownership. 

1986

A 40,000 square foot addition was added to the newer building in Middleburg Heights.The 22,000 square foot building is sold, consolidating all operations...
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Addition Added

  • A 40,000 square foot addition was added to the newer building in Middleburg Heights.

  • The 22,000 square foot building is sold, consolidating all operations under one roof at
    6840 Lake Abram Drive, Middleburg Heights 44130

1987

Bob Smetana distributes Dan Druso's shares to his daughter, Therese Smetana and converts Orbit Industries to a Subchapter S Corporation.
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Dan Druso shares distributed to Therese Smetana

Bob Smetana distributes Dan Druso's shares to his daughter, Therese Smetana and converts Orbit Industries to a Subchapter S Corporation.

1992

Orbit becomes the first NDT facility to obtain 3rd party accredidation through Nadcap in Ultrasonic, Liquid Penetrant, and Magnetic ParticleBob Smetana...
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Orbit Gains Nadcap Accreditation

  • Orbit becomes the first NDT facility to obtain 3rd party accredidation through Nadcap in Ultrasonic, Liquid Penetrant, and Magnetic Particle

  • Bob Smetana retires, selling Orbit to John Alexandrovic, Mary Smetana and Therese Smetana

  • Bob Smetana is retained as a consultant, as part of the buyout

1995

Orbit adds a Final inspection department to be utilized for Alcoa work.
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Orbit Adds Final Department

Orbit adds a Final inspection department to be utilized for Alcoa work.

1996

Orbit begins a relationship with Alcoa centered around aluminum forgings for the automotive sector, specificially for Mercedes. 
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Aluminum Forgings

Orbit begins a relationship with Alcoa centered around aluminum forgings for the automotive sector, specificially for Mercedes. 

1999

Orbit begins to implement OPuS (Orbit Production Systems) based on the principals of the Toyota Production System Critical data starts to be collected...
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Implementation of Orbit Production Systems

  • Orbit begins to implement OPuS (Orbit Production Systems) based on the principals of the Toyota Production System 

  • Critical data starts to be collected to utilize data based decision making and customer analysis tools that enhance our ability to predict, gauge, and improve all aspects of customer service

  • Orbit assists Alcoa in the development of their Kentucky Casting Center for the transfer of the Mercedes automotive program to that facility

2001

John Alexandrovic leads a buyout of Mary and Therese SmetanaPaul Michael Ward and Robert Jakovich are brought on board as ownersCausting Etch services...
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Buyout of Mary and Therese Smetana

  • John Alexandrovic leads a buyout of Mary and Therese Smetana

  • Paul Michael Ward and Robert Jakovich are brought on board as owners

  • Causting Etch services are added into Orbit's processing portfolio for aluminum forgings

2002

Orbit initiates the use of the Quality Rating System which tracks internal work order issues (mistakes), corrected certifications requested by our customers,...
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Quality Rating System Initiated

  • Orbit initiates the use of the Quality Rating System which tracks internal work order issues (mistakes), corrected certifications requested by our customers, and corrective actions

  • Sustained dedication to the Orbit Production System (OPuS) occurs

  • Robert Aleksandrovic rejoins Orbit as Chief Operating Office and Owner

2004

Orbit establishes OrbitNDT-MD in Baltimore, Maryland in a partnership with Alcoa Extruded Products to provide on-site independent Ultrasonic services.OrbitNDT-MD...
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OrbitNDT-MD Established

  • Orbit establishes OrbitNDT-MD in Baltimore, Maryland in a partnership with Alcoa Extruded Products to provide on-site independent Ultrasonic services.

  • OrbitNDT-MD operates as a fully accredited lab with Nadcap and Prime qualifications

  • The partnership continues until 2012, with OrbitNDT-MD delivering significant results

  • Orbit joins the Nadcap NDT Task Group and Supplier Support Comittee as a voting member

2005

Orbit purchases the building adjacent to the Middleburg Heights location, adding an additional 70,000 square feet of operating space.The property was eventually...
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Additional Building Purchased

  • Orbit purchases the building adjacent to the Middleburg Heights location, adding an additional 70,000 square feet of operating space.

  • The property was eventually sold in 2008

  • Business planning begins with Eagle Tool to implement Shot Peening as part of Orbit's services

2006

Orbit implements an automated plate system in Middleburg Heights, OHOrbit assists in a large investigation into suspect parts on planes. Our Quality Management...
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Automated Plate System

  • Orbit implements an automated plate system in Middleburg Heights, OH

  • Orbit assists in a large investigation into suspect parts on planes. Our Quality Management System was a vital tool in determining the sequence of events and the subsequent Root Cause for the Prime.

2007

Orbit establishes Ultrasonic testing operations in North Carolina, which continue until mid-2008.
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Ultrasonic Operations in North Carolina

  • Orbit establishes Ultrasonic testing operations in North Carolina, which continue until mid-2008.

2008

Orbit advances our role in the Nadcap Supplier Support Committe, begining in 2008. As of 2015, Orbit holds the position of Sub Team Lead for Task Group...
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Advanced Role in Nadcap

  • Orbit advances our role in the Nadcap Supplier Support Committe, begining in 2008. As of 2015, Orbit holds the position of Sub Team Lead for Task Group Representatives.

  • Orbit begins to venture into emerging technology with the development of ESP (Electronic Surface Profiling), easing into NDT Technology Development.

  • Significant focus is placed on securing our critical customer base, most of which have been with Orbit since the company's inception in 1965.

  • Orbit discontinues all Caustic Etching capabilities

  • Pursuit of Shot Peening with Eagle Tool is suspended. Orbit continues to pursue adding Shot Peening services by seeking partnership opportunities with Shot Peening companies.

2009

Creation of Bonus Triangle. This internal system is an employee incentive program that connects Orbit's performance data in Safety, Quality, and Profability....
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Orbit Bonus Triangle

  • Creation of Bonus Triangle. This internal system is an employee incentive program that connects Orbit's performance data in Safety, Quality, and Profability. It has been utilized once per quarter since 2009.

2010

Orbit Industries establishes OrbitNDT-PA, new operations in Titusville, PA. This location is in a partnership with Electralloy, functioning as a full independent...
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OrbitNDT-PA Established

Orbit Industries establishes OrbitNDT-PA, new operations in Titusville, PA. This location is in a partnership with Electralloy, functioning as a full independent NDT labratory within Electralloy's facility. It is designed to service Electralloy's Ultrasonic needs, as well as those of all other Ultrasonic customers and Primes.

2011

Orbit is approached by Alcoa to purchase OrbitNDT-MD and its Ultrasonic services, finalizing the sale in 2012. Orbit assisted Alcoa during an 8 month transistion...
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Alcoa Purchases OrbitNDT-MD

Orbit is approached by Alcoa to purchase OrbitNDT-MD and its Ultrasonic services, finalizing the sale in 2012. Orbit assisted Alcoa during an 8 month transistion period so that Alcoa may sustain delivery of product during the transition.

First succesful field inspection utilizing the new ESP (Electronic Surface Profiling) technology is completed on critical press components.

2012

Orbit begins an extensive relationship with Universal Stainless and Alloy, serving as their Level III of Record and implementing independent Ultrasonic...
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Orbit Consults for Universal Stainless and Alloy

  • Orbit begins an extensive relationship with Universal Stainless and Alloy, serving as their Level III of Record and implementing independent Ultrasonic operations in their North Jackson facility.

  • Orbit and National Peening (SINTO) develop a working agreement on developing Shot Peening operations in Cleveland, OH

2013

OrbitNDT-NJX, Inc. is officially open and operational at Universal Stainless and Alloy North Jackson, OH facility as an independent laboratoryOrbit Industries...
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OrbitNDT-NJX Established

  • OrbitNDT-NJX, Inc. is officially open and operational at Universal Stainless and Alloy North Jackson, OH facility as an independent laboratory

  • Orbit Industries develops an eight step partnering program to incorporate Orbit into multiple customer locations

2014

Orbit become a Nadcap Supplier Voting Member on the Nadcap Management CouncilOrbitNDT-PA gains Nadcap approval in Ultrasonic inspectionOrbitNDT-NJX gains...
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Orbit Becomes Nadcap Supplier Voting Member

  • Orbit become a Nadcap Supplier Voting Member on the Nadcap Management Council

  • OrbitNDT-PA gains Nadcap approval in Ultrasonic inspection

  • OrbitNDT-NJX gains Nadcap and Rolls Royce approval in Ultrasonic inspection

  • Orbit and National Peening(SINTO) open their joint venture in Bedford Heights, OH, combining our companies core competencies in Shot Peening and Nondestructive Testing

2014

From 1999-2014:19,626,962 parts inspected at Orbit Industries Middleburg Heights234,820 customer purchase orders processed3.4 days average turnaround time...
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230,000+ purchase orders processed from 1999-2014

From 1999-2014:

  • 19,626,962 parts inspected at Orbit Industries Middleburg Heights

  • 234,820 customer purchase orders processed

  • 3.4 days average turnaround time on those 234,820 purchase orders

2015

Middleburg Heights Ultrasonic capabilities expand to include C-scan systems for plate and bar stock materialRestructuring of internal NDT Systems at Middleburg...
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C-Scan Systems Added for Plate and Bar Stock

  • Middleburg Heights Ultrasonic capabilities expand to include C-scan systems for plate and bar stock material

  • Restructuring of internal NDT Systems at Middleburg Heights to maximize efficiencies and capabilities in our Liquid Penetrant and Magnetic Particle flowpaths

  • Orbit secures a partnership with Heroux Devtek to supply NDT on components for Heroux 777 Landing Gear contract with Boeing, through our Bedford Heights and Middleburg Heights facilities

2017

Orbit Industries, Inc. is excited to announce the opening of another subsidiary facility, OrbitNDT-DNKin Dunkirk, New York. This branch became operational...
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Orbit Opens 4th Subsidiary Location

Orbit Industries, Inc. is excited to announce the opening of another subsidiary facility,OrbitNDT-DNKin Dunkirk, New York. This branch became operational on January 24, 2017 within the facility of our customer and partner, Dunkirk Specialty Steel (DSS), and will ultimately operate as an independent laboratory at this location. (LINK) The expansion was fueled by the long standing business relationship between Dunkirk and Orbit and is designed to meet the growing needs of DSS for Ultrasonic (UT) bar stock inspection.

The opening of OrbitNDT-DNK allows for a more consistent on-site solution. Current Inspection Opportunities are UT bar stock inspection of .200diameter through 2.50diameter via a Tac Tic system. During 2017, OrbitNDT-DNK is working to gain Nadcap and other significant prime approvals. Development of additional immersion capabilities at this location is planned to meet the growing needs of Dunkirk and be in a position to offer additional inspection capacity to all of Orbits vast customer base.