Production facilities or machines demands frequent maintenance. This has been golden rule until now. Typically, companies will have a service agreement that will secure, that the supplier of the equipment will have a service engineer to inspect the equipment f.ex. every 6 months.
The service engineer will check the operation condition of the equipment and will replace parts based on fixed service intervals.
In case of unplanned production stop, the service engineer can be called in. An inspection of the equipment will decide if the equipment can be repaired or must be replaced. Unplanned production stops can be costly. The service engineer must prioritize this job above other planned actions and will typically have to drive to the installation site to determine which parts that must be used and also collect the parts at the warehouse. This also means that production stops can take longer time to fix and can cost the company a lot of money.
In some cases, the equipment is installed by an enduser, and it is the enduser, that finds the problem. They will then call the supplier or servicepartner, that will dispatch a service engineer based on a phonecall without real information about what is the cause of the problem.
The above scenario is a general description of how maintenance of equipment and machines is done in most companies today.
Imagine if machines could communicate with the outside world. Think about the opportunities that would unfold, if machines in a future setup frequently could send realtime operational data to a central server, that would compare and analyse data. First of all, serviceintervals that is now on elapsed time alone could be calculated based on actual operational situation. A machine that is used more would require more frequent maintenance – and the other way around.
Visualize the situation, that a service engineer could be called in before a crisis occurs. Ongoing comparison of realtime data can typically indicate, whether a problem will occur in the near future or not. It is easy to imagine the value in knowledge of a future problem before it occurs. Now a service engineer can plan a servicetour and can replace a part at a time, when the equipment is not in operation. If the service already knows which parts must be replaced, those can be brought on the first visit.
The reasons why many companies are excited about the opportunities with preventive maintenance are obvious;
- Reduced number of emergency service calls => lower cost for maintenance
- Lower risk of production stop
- Lower cost of repairs
- Increase of customer satisfaction
The good news is, that companies do not have to wait long before the new technology can be implemented.
The future can start tomorrow. There are thousands of sensors that can collect information about pressure, temperature, waterlevel etc.
There are plenty of IoT-systems on the market that will handle signals from one manufacturer.
EmbraceIoT – a cloudbased IoT-system developed by DeltaM2M – supports multiple manufacturers and can collect information from many different sensors and can monitor, present and analyse data.
It is easy to setup rules describing which situations will trigger an alert. This would turn everything upside down. Instead of customers calling in to report a problem that will require immidiate action, you could be the one calling them to tell them that you’ve fixed the problem before it even occurred.
The modern world of IoT enables you to offer preventive maintenance. It will require equipment and an advanced IoT-system plus knowledge to make it all work. DeltaM2M can provide you with the entire solution.
Please contact DeltaM2M at +45 4848 0148 to hear more about how your company can utilize the opportunities with preventive maintenance.