PREDICTIVE MAINTENANCE IN A COMPRESSED AIR SUPPLY THROUGH A CLOUD-BASED STATUS ASSESSMENT
to the fact that, in contrast to electricity generation, companies generate the
indispensable „energy of compressed air“ themselves, they are also responsible
for its long-term and reliable availability. Inevitably, due to the
digitalisation of the production processes, a fundamental change was made in
the field of maintenance tasks. With iConn, Gardner Denver has developed a
cloud-based platform which allows the user to look at the compressor and its
performance data virtually, from a computer or an iPad. iConn forms part of the
standard equipment in new CompAir compressors, but it can also be integrated
into existing compressor systems, and even equipment by other manufacturers, as
a retrofit solution.
Breusers, Aftermarket Product Manager at Gardner Denver: „Today, we look at the
compressed air supply in producing companies using a holistic approach,
regardless of their size. At a very early stage of our activities in countries
with a low density of industrial infrastructure, we learned the crucial
importance of the predictive maintenance approach. This led to us developing
iConn – a digital platform for IoT and Industry 4.0 solutions, for proactive
monitoring of information from compressed air systems in real time – very early
dealing with the maintenance of compressors should be aware that the
maintenance costs – calculated over the product life cycle – are similar to the
acquisition costs. For these reasons, in the past, many compressed air users
switched their service strategy from “parts replacement when needed” to
“preventive maintenance” and now replace wearing parts before they fail.
Undoubtedly, this means they increase the availability of the compressed air
station, but are always left facing a dilemma: too little maintenance can lead
to costly failures, production standstills and higher energy costs.
Alternatively servicing too early drives up costs unnecessarily, among other
things due to the need to stock supplies of expensive parts.
question is therefore: how do you find the right level of service – according
to the principle of “as much as necessary, as little as possible”?
maintenance: configuring iConn according to your needs
is the entry-level solution that provides a detailed and regular overview of
the operating hours. Irregularities and maintenance instructions are
automatically reported to the user in real time. With iConn Universal, it can
be retrofitted to monitor any unit from other manufacturers. You can choose
whether the messages are sent in the form of an email to the computer in the
maintenance centre or to the smartphone of the current person in charge. In
either case, the fault message is sent immediately as the situation arises. In
this way, it is possible to take preemptive steps before events, such as a drop
in pressure, have negative consequences for production. If the authorised
persons access the stored data via the web-based iConn page, they can
effectively track the life cycle of each compressor.
maintenance with the monitoring of compressors is possible without any
investment costs using the basic version of iConn. Even when the additional
functions are activated, it is not a luxury, but rather an economically
sensible investment, which can be used to ensure smooth production processes.
these additional features added, the system becomes iConn HD and enables
predictive maintenance planning with an “early warning system“ for machine
faults. This enables the user to conduct forward-looking, demand-oriented
maintenance (predictive maintenance), which is perfectly aligned with the motto
of “maintenance if and only if the probability of failure is rising“. Web-based
remote monitoring with dashboard control is also available. This digitised
service includes both predictive maintenance planning as well as maintenance
and periodic energy analysis in order to relieve the burden on compressed air
users entirely; energy savings and thus a sustainable use of the compressed air
as a means of production are also included.
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