A RAWDON-based air conditioning manufacturer is helping to keep vital technology up and running during the coronavirus pandemic.

While Airedale International has scaled back production to protect staff, the firm, which designs and manufactures precision cooling systems for critical equipment, has put processes in place to help protect and strengthen the operation of the nation's technology hubs.

“Due to the critical role our business plays in supporting UK and international key infrastructure, such as data centres, healthcare, energy, telecommunications and pharmaceuticals, it has been determined by the management team that Airedale International must continue to operate during this national emergency, albeit at a reduced capacity,” said managing director Anthony Cole.

“We are still seeing enquiries, receiving orders, making deliveries and fielding requests for commissioning, spare parts and technical support from industries which support everyday life for businesses and citizens.

"These industries must continue to operate at all costs during this unprecedented time and as such, we have a responsibility to ensure the data centres that support their IT infrastructure can function effectively through our specialist air conditioning technology.”

Airedale International is operating at a reduced capacity in the 23,000m² manufacturing plant and is introducing measures to support and protect its 450 staff around the world, including social distancing and increasing the ability to work from home.

The company is currently prioritising orders for data centres, hospitals, pharmaceutical plants and telecomms infrastructure.

Mr Cole added: “As we turn to technology to facilitate remote working, keep us in touch with loved ones and ensure delivery of essential services including healthcare and food provision, our reliance on communication technology has grown.

"Data centres play an integral part in keeping our society functioning and without effective cooling, the servers which hold the nations bank details, WhatsApp conversations, medical records, TV streaming services and e-mails, would soon overheat and fail."