Big Data, Cloud, Internet of Things, and Smart Factory: This is just a selection of the buzzwords currently dominating the discussions in many industry sectors. Beneath all of this is the need for almost complete automation of production and control processes.
However, the move towards self-controlling production plants increases the functional complexity and also drastically increases the requirements on the operating personnel. User-friendly and well-conceived solutions will therefore become even more important in the future.
Objective: Smart Factory
An important prerequisite for automation and plant management is the communication among the machines. For this reason, connecting all the components within a plant is a central prerequisite for setting up the so-called "Smart Factory." The vision of the Smart Factory also requires that that all upstream and downstream production processes be interconnected. Such a plant monitoring system also requires interfaces for the seamless data exchange between plant control, process visualisation, and operator.
More than 50 % of all pump damage is caused by misalignment. The failure rate can be significantly reduced with the use of laser measuring systems.
Device connectivity is the measure of all things in maintenance as well
Comprehensive device connectivity, be it via a network, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or a Cloud solution is also a key requirement when implementing maintenance solutions. Connectivity is decisive for mobile service and maintenance teams. They often perform maintenance work at different sites and/or for different clients and need to be able to call up orders or send measurement reports at any time.
Alignment as part of the maintenance strategy
Intelligent condition monitoring of machines and plants is an important part of a comprehensive maintenance strategy. This also includes the precise alignment of machine shafts, as incorrect alignment causes more than 50 % of all damage to rotating machines.
- Premature wear of bearings, seals, shafts, and couplings
- High temperatures at bearing and coupling
- Excessive vibrations
- Loose foundation screws
- Breaking (or tearing) of shafts on the inside
- Increased power consumption
Laser shaft alignment with online functionality
Different shaft alignment methods are available. Shaft alignment using a straightedge, a feeler gauge, or a dial gauge can still be found. One of the disadvantages of these methods is that they cannot be integrated into a Smart Factory with self-controlling production processes as they do not offer connectivity. However, integration of maintenance tools into technologies of the Smart Factory are already possible: The laser-optical method is used worldwide and across many industry sectors as standard process for shaft alignment. Mobile devices, such as tablet PCs or smartphones, can communicate with the sensor system. Thus, measurement reports can be sent immediately via e.g. e-mail.
Laser shaft alignment offers many outstanding advantages, including:
- Graphical display of the alignment results
- No coupling disassembly required during measurement
- Accurate and repeatable results paired with high usability
- Results can be electronically stored and printed
- Display of vertical and horizontal corrections in real time during machine adjustment (Live Move mode)
ROTALIGN touch – the first Cloud-based alignment system for Smart Factories
Connectivity and usability paired with high precision: ROTALIGN touch, the latest member of the PRUFTECHNIK product family meets all the requirements for a modern and innovative alignment system.
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/product-news/23102015/precision-meets-connectivity-rotalign-832/