Manufacturing machinery is a complex blend of electronic and mechanical components integrated into a single machine or production line. The designs are sophisticated, and the technology used is complex, even for the designers. More so for the users. The EcoStruxure Machine Advisor platform allows OEMs to support and fix their machines remotely.
The current way of monitoring and servicing machines in manufacturing plants is both costly and time consuming. Attempts by machine builders to keep their machines performing at a high level have limitations. These are because they lack quick and easy access to end user machine location and operations information.
Providing machine monitoring and services for customers provides machine builders growth opportunities. They offer the chance to stay close to customers by offering a wide range of support tools. Using EcoStruxure Machine Advisor makes it possible to track, monitor and fix machines in the field. According to Schneider Electric, it reduces support costs by 30 to 50 percent.
Furthermore, end-users often struggle to track the history of machines under their responsibility. Replacing parts interrupts production and lengthens downtimes. That said, maintenance technicians often spend more time locating the correct documentation.
For machine builders moving towards a more services-oriented model, technology will need to act as an enabler. Firstly, the machine builder will start, through advanced data collection, by acquiring a new awareness of machine use in the field. This is useful when addressing production quality issues. The machine builder can leverage the machine information to improve machine performance.
Secondly, as machine parts begin to wear out, instead of having to manage fixes in emergency situations, predictions of impending failures based on the early tracking and analysis of subtle performance anomalies will allow machine builders to provide better service to end users while minimising the duration of any machine downtime.
EcoStruxure Machine Advisor helps machine builders develop service opportunities in several ways:
– Tracking – An online repository service provides machine builders with easy access to documentation. It extends from bill of materials, to localisation and maintenance logs, and stores the full history of all their machines in the field. This helps identify the locations of machines, the tasks required to perform machine service, and the spare parts required. A log is also generated that documents all machine-related activities and events that have taken place.
– Monitoring – Cloud-enabled remote access allows machine builders to assess performance of remote machines. Intuitive and user-friendly dashboards display KPIs and track notifications. The monitoring tools are easy to configure as the user interface provides time-saving widgets. These graphical user interfaces display easy ways for a user to interact with the application).
– Fixing – Additionally, Machine Advisor works with the EcoStruxure Augmented Operator Advisor app. Augmented reality puts real-time information in front of the users when needed to speed up repairs. It provides step-by-step graphical images of procedures on the repair person’s hand-held tablet device
Machine Advisor can help to streamline both machine building and manufacturing line processes. Its capabilities place machine builders in a position to add value to their end-user customers across the machine life cycle.