With an Asset and facility maintenance practices have been evolving in parallel with all industrial processes. Utilizing technology available in the industry today has become the new standard to improve many different activities and maintenance processes are not an exception.
Today, it’s more and more common that our equipment and tools have a certain level of intelligence built in. By including different kind of sensors, counters, PLC’s and internal computes that communicate different aspects of the equipment condition, we have and incredible amount of data available that was never possible before. But if there’s no place to receive, organize and analyze all the data, we miss out on the opportunity to make our maintenance processes much more efficient.
Maintenance 4.0 takes advantage of these opportunities. It is an evolution from the old times where the maintenance technician was waiting for something to break and then receiving an order to repair the equipment. Under this break-fix model, technicians were stuck in the mode of solving emergencies and then trying to understand what caused them. Now, with the help of new technology, it’s possible to predict a future failure by the automatically monitoring the condition of your assets and analyze the different variables involved in efficient equipment operation.
To take advantage of this concept, it’s important to establish some key practices for efficient maintenance processes:
- Organize the equipment inventory in an asset structure to better understand and present the dependencies between the operational equipment in the plant.
- Identify the proper failure codes for correct analysis by equipment family or class.
- Create, monitor, and balance regularly your Preventive Maintenance plan, by defining the time expected for each activity, the materials required to perform the task, as well as the technical skills required to execute the tasks correctly.
- Analyze the information available from the equipment—failure codes and meter readings— and identify trends.
- Develop an inspection program to detect failures against meter readings.
- Learn about the advantages of collecting data from equipment with IoT devices or sensors that can be installed to monitor and control your equipment.
- Centralize your information in a best-of-breed EAM system to be able to analyze all the data generated from the maintenance process.
Infor EAM is a solution that allows us to have all the information from our different production assets organized in one place. With this software solution, we can identify failure modes in a specific equipment family, standardize the failure analysis, evaluate the preventive maintenance activities, and evolve to a predictive maintenance model according to the results of the analysis of the data. By shifting to this model, we can have a direct positive impact on equipment availability, reduce production downtime, and eliminate the generation of inferior quality goods. With continues improvement and refinement of this concept, we should see a dramatic decrease in maintenance costs and increased benefits to the company’s bottom line.