Maintworld 4/2018


The Maintenance Imperative // Energy savings // Safety Hazards in the Food Processing Industry


maintenance & asset management




p 18


Finding the Right

Responder Just Got Easier

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See the solution video at


From Maintenance

to Asset Risk



aims to ensure dependability – reliability,

availability, maintainability, safety –

which in turn ensures that machinery and

equipment always work optimally and are

available when needed.

Companies with operations that involve

great risks tend to consider maintenance

as a justified investment, which

will also boost their performance and

efficiency. For instance, the dependability

of aircraft or nuclear plants is defined immediately

at the planning stage with emphasis on reliability. This makes any

maintenance work on such products or services truly preventative, aiming to

avoid any risk scenarios in advance by using systematic maintenance methods

and continuously developing them.

See Your Alternatives Before They Materialise

The methods applied in high-risk cases are also suitable for primary industry

purposes. When the timing and scope of maintenance actions are in balance

with the assessed risks, they can bring about significant savings even to

medium-sized companies. Above all, we are rewarded in the most important

aspect of the business – in our promises to customers.

The risk management of fixed assets begins with a scenario analysis, which

will identify risks and show alternative future outcomes before they occur.

When planning processes, we make sure that essential data is gathered early

enough, and consequently that we base the utilisation of information on a

comprehensive plan and systematic operational models. Advanced analytics

and RAMS modelling are important tools to identify company’s critical

functions and essential cause-consequence chains, both in production and

product design.

However, reactive maintenance is still very common in many technology

companies. If we decide to accept unpredictability in maintenance, we are

also accepting the risks and costs associated with reactive responses.

Risk Management as Part of the Organisation

The advancement of digitalization is rapid in the tech business and better

risk management has become a clear trend. In spite of this, systematic operational

development methods are still not used properly on an organisational

level, even though plenty of proven methods and tools, and good examples

are available.

The potential benefits from long-term risk management of fixed assets are

considerable. A comprehensive approach to maintenance and continuous

systematic development will lead to better products and services, happier

customers, and more efficient organisations. And at its best, this could be the

key to really improve on environmental and human safety, energy efficiency

and sustainability. Isn’t it time to take maintenance to an entirely new level in

technology companies globally?

6 maintworld 4/2018

Timo Lehtinen

CEO, Ramentor Oy, Chair of the Finnish Maintenance Society

Promaint’s dependability committee.




productivity in

Sweden without

adding personnel




to predictive analytics

and IoT we are currently

living in an unprecedented

era of renewed interest in

maintenance and reliability.


The Importance of Physical

Asset Management






It’s About “Time”

Connected Field Service

Energy Savings 4.0

The Maintenance Imperative

Facility Managers: How to

Benchmark your Mechanical






How to Choose an Air

Compressor – 8 Factors to


Research report: Predictive

Maintenance 4.0

How Many Planners and

Supervisors Do We Need?

OPC UA Makes Popular

MTConnect Better





Combining Machine and Human

Intelligence to Unlock Hidden

Value in Existing Process Data

Maintenance 4.0: hype or game


Hazards in the Food Processing


Flexible Cobots Boost Capacity

and Satisfaction at Swedish

Machine Shop

Issued by Promaint (Finnish Maintenance Society), Messuaukio 1, 00520 Helsinki, Finland tel. +358 29 007 4570

Publisher Omnipress Oy, Mäkelänkatu 56, 00510 Helsinki, tel. +358 20 6100,,

Editor-in-chief Nina Garlo-Melkas tel. +358 50 36 46 491,, Advertisements Kai Portman, Sales

Director, tel. +358 358 44 763 2573, Layout Menu Meedia, Subscriptions and

Change of Address members, non-members Printed by Painotalo Plus

Digital Oy, Frequency 4 issues per year, ISSN L 1798-7024, ISSN 1798-7024 (print), ISSN 1799-8670 (online).

4/2018 maintworld 7






VP, Building, Electrical

Plant & Structural,

Design Engineering,

Bentley Systems, Inc.

At Bentley Systems, we have been talking to our users, especially owners, and it has

become clear that despite our collective best efforts, there is a gap in the market.

Owners need easy access to real-time, accurate, engineering information and they

need tools that make it simple to keep engineering data up-to-date, especially those

engaged in brownfield and revamp projects. It takes too much time and effort to

gather and verify the information they need to make decisions effectively. And for

older plants that do not have 3D models, there is simply no visual way to verify

and check information easily.

AT BENTLEY SYSTEMS, we have been talking

to our users, especially owners, and it

has become clear that despite our collective

best efforts, there is a gap in the market.

Owners need easy access to realtime,

accurate, engineering information

and they need tools that make it simple

to keep engineering data up-to-date,

especially those engaged in brownfield

and revamp projects. It takes too much

time and effort to gather and verify the

information they need to make decisions

effectively. And for older plants that do

not have 3D models, there is simply no

visual way to verify and check information


Working closely together over the

last several years, Siemens and Bentley

have integrated Siemens’ COMOS system

and Bentley’s OpenPlant 3D plant

design solutions to address integration

between P&ID’s and 3D models for design

workflows using iModels. iModels help

users share models and information for

projects associated with the lifecycle of

infrastructure assets, insuring that information

flows easily, completely, and accurately

between and within design, construction,

and operations environments.

However, better integration between

P&IDs and 3D models, whilst improving

the quality and accuracy of engineering

data only tackles a small portion of the

problem. So, over the past two years,

Bentley and Siemens developed a vision

for an open, cloud-based solution that

will deliver a collection of microservices

including process and plant engineering,

physical layout modeling, project, and

construction planning, maintenance,

and asset performance modeling. This

vision also encompassed supporting

federation of data from underlying services

and related applications, so that

each data point is stored only once. The

solution will provide means to access

traditionally inaccessible data, through

intelligent scanning and interpretation.

Services to validate data and link it to

other information, combined with traceability

of changes to improve the degree

8 maintworld 4/2018


of accuracy, completeness, and trustworthiness

of asset data and documentation,

improve compliance and the quality of

decision making. The solution is scalable,

secure, and extendable and will

reduce IT footprint and cost.

Introducing PlantSight

PlantSight is a cloud-based plant engineering,

and operations solution that

scales from the simplest plant modification

workflows to those required for

complex capital projects. The solution

shares a common data model across a

connected data environment (CDE)

which integrates services delivered from

both Siemens and Bentley.

Services include data acquisition that

can load plant design information from

not only COMOS and OpenPlant, but

also from AVEVA and Hexagon, data

aggregation services to consolidate and

aggregate data into the CDE and ensure

that all data is correctly synchronized,

a tag registry service that manages tags

across all these multiple systems. Tags

are used to identify assets and are typically

the common denominator between

different engineering and operations

systems. They are also one of the hardest

things to consolidate and keep updated

across these systems.

With Siemens expertise in functional

information and Bentley’s expertise in

3D spatial information, PlantSight solves

this problem. In addition to aggregating

data from plant design systems, it

can also aggregate data from Excel, ISO

15926 and other data sources, giving the

operator instant access to accurate tag

information. The PlantSight tag registry

is also integrated directly with COMOS

and OpenPlant, so they share this capability

with design workflows. We see

other PlantSight services being similarly

shared as user requirements demand.

And if there is no 3D model of the

existing plant? PlantSight can also combine

a reality mesh of an existing plant,

together with any 3D models that may

be available, and link tag information to

the geospatial coordinates of that tagged





The solution will facilitate the construction

of digital twins as a federation

of data from many online and off-line

sources and require very little IT integration.

It would help incorporate data

from digitally inaccessible sources,

sometimes referred to as “dark data,”

and mobile sources used in the field.

An accurate, up-to-date, accessible

digital twin reduces time to operational

readiness and can influence time-tomarket.

The ease with which this twin

can be updated during operation or

modified during projects supports the

need for increased flexibility and adaptability.

The seamless and on-going

integration of process engineering,

maintenance, 3D representation, and

operational performance information,

speeds up and supports continuous improvement

and thereby efficiency, sustainability

and return on assets. Owneroperators

can combine the solution with

asset management best practices to improve

useful life and asset value, such as

Bentley’s AssetWise ALM solution. The

digital twin makes it easier to engineer

for safety and compliance and verify the

as-built and as-maintained facility.

In addition to information accessible

on-line, there is a category of inaccessible

sources, such as PDF documents,

drawings or paper documents, and

electronic data in legacy systems that

can benefit a broader set of users, when

made available. PlantSight will include

intelligent services to help incorporate,

analyze and connect data from these

sources, also called “dark data.” Functionalities

to access this data would

include smart scanning to interpret

schematics and drawings, reading from

instrumentation and equipment lists,

and linking diagrams with data objects

describing the physical objects. Other

software components would help extract

locked data, making it available to those

who may need it. As the data quality may

be inconsistent, validation steps will

allow the differentiation of useful data

from poor data. Upon validation, the data

can be linked to plant and data objects.

In addition, the solution provides the

possibility to add untagged plant information

in the field on a mobile device.

What about change?

For operators, one of the biggest challenges

is knowing what changed, when

it changed and what specifically are the

differentials that could affect operational

assets? Not just the most recent

change, it’s every change – historically

on record. Operators want to be

able to visualize these changes in 3D,

quickly highlight tagged items that have

changed, and be able to dive into the

details and see exactly what information

was modified. P&IDs are probably

one of the most important operational

documents, so how about if you can view

those same changes we saw in 3D visualized

on the P&ID? Visualizing changes

using the context of a familiar document

adds real value to operators. Let’s not

forget about operators in the field. So

how do we capture changes from the

field in the first place?

4/2018 maintworld 9


Keep it simple

And what about sketching new components

like valves or pumps, or

adding a comment and having it automatically

associated with the correct

tagged items? How about indicating

removal of tags with a simple

strike through? Siemens and Bentley

have already integrated changes

that are initiated within PlantSight

and directly communicated back to

COMOS and OpenPlant to close the

loop and simplify the entire change

process end-to-end.

Valentijn de Leeuw, Vice

President ARC Advisory Group,

recently commented: “Siemens’ and

Bentley’s newly-developed Plant-

Sight services will establish a

foundation for next-generation asset

information and performance

management. For as-operated digital

twins, this augments the actual

plant by integrating operational

data with operational intelligence

dashboards, immersive operator

training simulation, and links with

applications such as process simulation,

asset strategy, and reliability.”

In summary, PlantSight closes

a gap in the marketplace for plant

operations and maintenance. It is a

new solution that works with existing

systems, leverages new technologies

such as reality modeling,

3D web-based visualization, cloudservices,

and IoT to consolidate and

aggregate information and support

constant and continuous change

management. Plant operators can

now quickly and accurately create

and manage “as-operated” digital

twins of their assets. And it’s about


According to a paper published by ARC

Advisory Services in June 2018 1 :

“THE FINANCIAL CRISIS OF 2007-2008 and the recent drop in oil prices that led to significant

reductions in demand and asset utilization, has created the awareness that large-scale

and single-purpose assets can have important drawbacks when markets are highly volatile.

The resulting pressure to increase efficiency and return on assets requires shorter times to

operational readiness and greater flexibility in operating and modifying assets to follow market

demand. In practical terms:

For plants under construction by engineering procurement and construction firms (EPC’s),

owner-operators (OO’s) require tighter collaboration than before. Examples of these requirements

are electronic design reviews and tracking of construction and commissioning progress

against electronic documents and 3D surveys.

• The asset information built up during engineering and construction is often incomplete or

outdated at the moment of transfer. NIST estimates the cost of information losses during

handover to be 1.8% of capital expenditures. There is a huge opportunity to enhance the

process by improving change management to ensure the data is accurate and information

is reused.

• When engineering or maintenance trouble shoot an operational issue or need to start a

modification project, they lose precious time when trying to determine the status and performance

of the asset before starting their actual work because often, the asset information

is missing or inaccurate. Functional, operational and 3D spatial information – for the

plant, building, or both - are often not available side by side and are often inconsistent.

Furthermore, time is often lost due to inaccurate information on spare parts. NIST estimates

the cost of information losses in the operate-maintain phases of the asset to be 2.4% of

the capital expenditure cost. Complete, accessible, and accurate asset information has the

potential to shorten project duration and “mean time to repair” (MTTR), and to lower operational

and capital expenditures.

• High reliability is required for the best return on assets and process safety. Reliability-centered

maintenance methodologies are well advanced and remote equipment monitoring is

available. To be efficient, reliability engineers need seamless access to all asset information.

• As regulatory requirements tighten, compliance costs increase. In some cases, compliance

becomes impossible as accurate information cannot be produced at any point in time. The

efficiency of compliance processes must be improved using electronic design and requirement

documentation, with electronic sign-offs.

• In the foreseeable future, modular production plants will be built that are easier to modify

and use more energy and material efficient process technologies. Initial use in pilot installations

will gradually be extended to industrial production. This will further increase the

pressure on flexibility and efficiency for fast-track engineering as well as on operation and

requirements for a digital twin.”

1. “Bentley’s and Siemens’ Vision for Cloud-based Distributed Engineering and Operations”

by ARC Advisory Group, June 2018

10 maintworld 4/2018







8 MP


© / SergeyVButorin

Thermography Systems

for Maintenance and Plant Monitoring

Premium Infrared Cameras for Maintenance

• Handheld thermographic camera series VarioCAM® High

Definition incorporates intuitive one-handed operation

• Modular design to adapt the camera to the inspection task

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• Integrated, light-sensitive 8 MP digital camera with

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• Rotatable and revolvable high resolution 5.6" colour TFT

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length for monitoring distant plant areas

• Recording and analysis of the thermal behaviour

• Automatic image stabilisation

• 24/7 operation

• Different equipment options available

Further information at:




Senior Director of

Global Marketing,



Field Service

For many organizations, their history with maintenance

operations and facilities management evokes a

typical multi-system, break-fix reactionary model. In

most cases, these applications would involve multiple

disparate systems; one for controls, one for HVAC,

one for security, one for work order management…

Typically, few of these systems, often sourced from

different vendors, would connect to each other or

interact. Maintenance operations would wait until

a problem occurred and then send a technician out

with a work order.


overly detailed, might lack an equipment

repair history, and provide little accompanying

information past an equipment

identifier and location. Of course, usually

that work order needed to be completed

quickly to free up that same technician

for the next break-fix work order in the

queue, never leaving time for the insightful

correlation of underlying causes to

possible maintenance-requiring symptoms.

Fortunately, technology within the

facilities management industry has certainly

progressed past a single break-fix

option. Multiple technologies have

emerged, then evolved, to make maintenance

less reactionary and more proactive.

Some of these technologies include

the Industrial Internet of Things

(IIoT), rapidly improving connectivity

between networks, sensors, machines,

and building system equipment. Next is

the proliferation of mobile computing

devices and, more specifically, devices

12 maintworld 4/2018


that provide a head-mounted display

combined with hands-free operation

(e.g., Microsoft’s HoloLens holographic

computer or RealWear’s HMT-1 head

mounted wearable device). The additional

integral ingredient to enable a

cutting-edge Connected Field Service

(CFS) solution is the software to tie it

all together.

ICONICS, a global automation software

vendor and six-time Microsoft

Partner of the Year award winner, created

its Fault Detection and Diagnosticsbased

Facility AnalytiX® software to

provide maintenance personnel with a

complete, ongoing commissioning solution

to significantly reduce costs and

improve operational efficiency. Facility

AnalytiX incorporates user customizable

fault rules to report faults; weighing

the probability of equipment failures

and advising personnel of immediate

preventative actions that can be taken to

reduce downtime, improve safety, and

optimize energy savings.

Building upon the strength of its

working relationship with Microsoft,

ICONICS is now focusing its attention

on the mobile aspect of Connected Field

Services. The goal was to build a solution

that not only lets users know when connected

equipment uses too much energy

or is about to fail (e.g., Fault Detection),

but also delivers guaranteed notifications

to the right service technician at

the right time, with the correct required

information, tools, and parts required

to quickly resolve the issue. The heart

of this solution, known as ICONICS

CFSWorX, packages those capabilities

up into a convenient mobile app for

today’s popular smartphones and mobile


Microsoft has made significant investments

in its Azure and Dynamics

365 platforms, enabling ICONICS to

deliver a more powerful, integrated

Connected Field Service solution than

ever before possible. Those investments

include Microsoft’s Azure IoT services,

which allow users to “securely connect,

monitor, and manage billions of devices

to develop Internet of Things (IoT) applications”,

and Microsoft Dynamics 365

for Field Service, which provides “builtin

intelligence” to help “resolve service

issues before they occur, reduce operational

costs, and deliver positive onsite


Customers are certainly seeing the

benefit of this combination of IIoT,

predictive analysis, and field service

software. A typical maintenance scenario

prior to these combined abilities

would be as follows. A piece of equipment

would generate an alert, such as an

alarm or fault; perhaps that it was using

too much power. A standalone process or

building maintenance system would recognize

the condition and send an alert.

A maintenance manager would receive

that alert and call a field technician to

investigate the problem. That field technician

may or may not be available to address

the problem right away, potentially

resulting in costly downtime and wasted

energy. All in all, a very reactionary process.

Combining the power of ICONICS

CFSWorX with Microsoft Dynamics 365

for Field Service and Azure IoT services

changes this scenario. When the equipment

generates an alert, CFSWorX uses

a customizable weighted scoring system

that factors in each technician’s schedule

(on/off duty), availability (signal

strength, battery life, device health), location

(proximity to the issue), and skill

level to determine which technician is

best for the task and sends a notification

to his or her mobile device. That technician

can then accept, snooze, or decline

the assignment through the CFSWorX

app. If the issue is declined, the algorithm

kicks back in and delivers a notification

to the next best technician, and

all actions are logged in a comprehensive

audit trail for reporting, accountability,

and training purposes. Upon arriving at

the equipment in question, the technician

is provided with full information

on the problem at hand, along with a

complete repair history and guidance

towards required parts and tools. This

is achieved by combining real-time information

from ICONICS software with

work order history and related information

from Dynamics 365 in a unified interface,

enabling the technician to make

a fast, informed fix.

Increasingly, maintenance personnel

are provided with state-of-the-art

hardware technology to ensure correct

repair procedures and save time and

costs per service ticket. At the SPS IPC

Drives event in Nuremburg, Germany,

ICONICS will demonstrate the new

Remote Expert feature for its Mobile-

HMI app, integrated with RealWear’s

HMT-1 device. Previously, users could

visualize real-time information, pull up

associated manuals/documentation, and

review step-by-step instructions on the

HMT-1. New this year, the field service

technician will be able to call upon an

“expert” for help in troubleshooting difficult

issues. Once connected with the

expert, he or she can share a live video

stream, photos, or even the current display

with the expert, who can then verbally

guide the technician, even adding

annotations to the shared images to help

visually convey exactly what the technician

needs to do.

Using ICONICS’ software solutions

for fault detection/diagnostics, scheduling,

and guaranteed notification of

service technicians, as well as advanced

UIs and “expert” capabilities within

mobile, hands-free devices, can provide

customers with an innovative, proactive,

cost-effective Connected Field Service


To learn more about these exciting

innovations in field service operations,

watch the solution video at

4/2018 maintworld 13



We have all read about it: leak detection should be a top priority since, if no leak

detection program has been implemented, leaks can account for 30 to 40% of

consumed volume. So, why is this issue still on the table? Why is it difficult to

change things in the field?


SDT International

IN THE INDUSTRY, one of the most common

applications when using ultrasonic

detectors is to search for leaks to achieve

energy savings. For both service providers

and maintenance engineers, the

hardest task is not to localize the leaks,

which is child’s play if you have the appropriate

tool, but to generate a report,

organize the required repairs and communicate

on the resulting savings within

the company. A company-wide cost reduction

program will be efficient only if

all stakeholders are involved. When the

implementation of an efficient program

aiming at minimizing the energy costs

related to compressed air leaks fails, it is

not due to technology, which never fails,

but to human factors. All surveyed companies

that had initiated a leak detection

program that did not last in the long

term had something in common: a lack

of communication.

Good Communication a Key


The successful implementation of an

energy-saving strategy relies on good

communication between all stakeholders

involved, directly or indirectly, in this approach.

What you need to do is to nominate

5 different people, each having a

very specific role to play in this campaign.

The first person is the Inspector: he/she

knows the network and where to find the

losses. The second person is the Purchasing

Officer: he/she buys the equipment

required to manage the program and possibly

negotiates power supplies. The third

person is the Planning Manager: he/she

will schedule the repairs to be done further

to the inspection of the network. The

fourth person is the Technician who will

repair the defects that have been localized.

The fifth person involved is the most

important one: he/she is the “Sponsor”

whose role is to communicate the savings

achieved. By communicating these

savings within the company, he/she will

make the project come alive with visible

and measurable results.

It is easy to say, but in reality it takes

a lot of time and organization. However,

since the advent of smartphones, tablets

and other connected devices in the




maintenance world, you can now use

free assistance tools available as iOS/

Android applications to measure leakinduced

costs and document them with

pictures. These applications can also be

used to assist the various stakeholders

and monitor the different steps to complete

the implemented program (e.g.,

LEAKReporter, LeakSurvey). These

14 maintworld 4/2018




1 2 3 4

Pre-Survey Checks Start Survey Pinpoint and Tag Repair and Document

Pinpoint the exact location

of the leak by moving closer

to the source, if safe to do so.


Check safety policies.

Check working environment

for hazards. Intrinsically safe

equipment required?

Adjust headphone and instrument

volume to the minimum

necessary for the job.

Protect from hearing damage!

Reduce instrument amplification

“sensitivity” as you approach leak.


Isolate system to be worked on.

Lock-out and tag-out system machines.

Review compressed

air system layout/drawings.

Sweep target area from left to right and

top to bottom.

Control any background noise or

sound with shielding techniques.

Bleed off any excess

system pressure.



Inspect the area, locate pipes,

valves and fittings.



Check gauge for

expected pressures.

Locate any leaks.

Adjust instrument amplification

“sensitivity” as required.


Manage your reflections:

Verify that the true source of the leak

is being detected and that the signal is

not being reflected off nearby objects

or walls.

Repair defect to eliminate leak.


Update the status of the repaired leaks

in your LEAKReporter app.

Equipment Check:

1. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

2. Ultrasound instrument

3. Headphones

4. Extended distance sensor

5. Flexible sensor

6. Parabolic sensor

7. Shielding cloth

8. Tags and marker/pen

9. Defect log

10. Flashlight



Re-adjust headphone and instrument

volume if leak is nearby.


Control your measurement position.


Create a survey and document your

leaks in pictures with the

LEAKReporter app.


Manage repairs and evaluate costs on


Notify supervision and operations that

repair task is completed.



Once system is back online

re-survey the area and record the new

value (dBuV) for documentation.


© Copyright 2018 by SDT INTERNATIONAL. No copying or reproduction of this information, in any form whatsoever, may be undertaken without

express written permission of SDT INTERNATIONAL. WARNING: The content of this graphic is a basic guide to leak detection. In practice, more details

must be taken into account. SDT INTERNATIONAL is not responsible for any damage or injury arising out of the use of this document.

This infographic is the result of a collaborative development project between SDT Ultrasound Solutions and LUDECA Inc -


4/2018 maintworld 15


tools are now able to automatically assess

the costs of the defects detected

over an entire year. Communication between

all departments affected, directly

or indirectly, by the program is now

simple and natural.

Giving New Life to a Project

In 2018, we worked with a company

located in the North of Manchester,

which, for many years, has used measuring

instruments to detect leaks.

However, no energy savings have been

observed nor measured. As a result,

the team was experiencing a loss of

motivation and had given up on its cost

reduction strategy. Thus, our customer’s

request was simple: give new life to their

projects. The first steps consisted in

clearly redefining everyone’s role. The

second step was to train the team to the

use of newly available tools: leak detector

and mobile applications. The third

step was to set up a “think tank” inviting

all stakeholders to reflect on the best approach

to adopt in order to manage and

organize a leak detection campaign before,

during and after our intervention

(see diagram below). Finally, the fourth

step was to celebrate our results with all

the people involved in the project.

After two days on site, everyone

knew precisely what was expected of

them. Seventeen leaks were localized,

representing potential annual savings

of 3 934 GBP (4 481 EUR) and, after

the quick repair of seven leaks, actual

savings of 1 648 GBP (1 877 EUR). As a

result, the inspector has a better control

of his/her network and of compressed

air losses and actual needs; the purchasing

officer can calculate the return on

investment; the technician feels valued

by the savings generated by his/her

work; and finally, everyone is thankful

to the sponsor for (re)establishing

communication between the different


Automatic work order generated

by the application.

Automatic savings sheet generated by the mobile application.

16 maintworld 4/2018




The Importance of Physical

Asset Management

In today’s operating and production environments, systems and equipment must routinely

perform at levels that were not possible a decade ago and which were unthinkable

thirty years ago. Requirements for increased availability, throughput, product

quality, agility, and operating effectiveness within a rapidly-changing demand environment

continue to elevate the tempo and intensity of operations.


CMRP, President, Energy

Services at Marshall



AS ORGANIZATIONS are pressured to

reduce costs to remain competitive, they

must produce the same or improved

results with fewer people and, often,

with diminished resources. Increasingly

restrictive regulatory constraints are

contributing to reduced operating flexibility,

and operating margins. In addition,

the need to reduce capital employed

is leading to lower levels of stocked spare

parts, diminished redundancy and again,

operating flexibility. In a world of foreign

manufactured, mass marketed, unitized

18 maintworld 4/2018

constructed, machine assembled, and

non-repairable disposable consumer

products, where no one under the age of

fifty has ever seen the inside of an alarm

clock, or a toaster, or the engine compartment

of a 57 Ford, and the concept of

craftsmanship is mostly unheard of, it is

increasingly difficult to find competently

skilled workers.

The necessity to maintain—and often

increase—operational effectiveness, revenue,

and customer satisfaction, while simultaneously

reducing capital, operating,

and support costs is the largest challenge

facing operating and production enterprises.

Success demands radical change

from earlier culture, process, management,

and organizational concepts.

Furthermore, organizations must attain

unprecedented levels of equipment availability,

reliability, and maintainability.

They must manage the behaviour of a

fortune’s-worth of thundering mechanical

beasts with the strong arm of a blacksmith

and the nimble fingers of a sixteenyear-old

computer geek. “Old time mechanics’

skills” must be smoothly blended

with “gigabit & teraflop” information systems,

under the direction of MBA class

management skills, to effectively mitigate

mission-threatening anomalies.

Traditionally, equipment maintenance

and reliability have been viewed

as business costs, largely below the radar

of senior corporate and financial executives.

Today’s climate of heavy profitability

pressures have caused operating,

process, and manufacturing enterprises

to reduce costs through measures such

as workforce reductions, deferment of

“non-essential” work, and outsourcing

some services. All these things might gain


short-term results, but they are failed

strategies, and eventually they will take

a toll on the workforce, the equipment,

and the bottom line. Generally, costs can

be reduced, but doing so is a much more

sophisticated proposition than hacking

at the organization with a knife. You can

trim the fat. But, be careful … you might

cut an artery! The secret to maintenance

cost savings is to stop doing things that

serve no useful purpose. Focus on taking

care of machines so that they don’t need

to be “fixed”, instead of spending all your

resources on “fixing” machines. Know

exactly where you are spending your

money, so that you can stop wasting most

of it. Record what you do! Learn what

works [or doesn’t work] – “He who does

not remember history … is condemned to

repeat it.” If you buy something, be it a

“part”, or a machine, take care of it! – Or

you will just have to buy it again when you

can least afford the delay.

In terms of equipment expenditures,

analyses of cause and distribution indicate

that as much as 60 percent of

maintenance costs are unnecessary and

preventable. Industry leaders are convinced

that reductions of 20 to 30 percent

are reasonably achievable. For most

enterprises, the potential recovery is in

the tens, even hundreds of millions of

dollars—equivalent to 15 to 25 percent of

non-raw-material operating and maintenance

(O&M) costs.

The Role of Maintenance

In any industry or service organization,

the simple problems of yesterday have

become extremely complex today. Gone

forever are the days of plentiful and

low-cost capital; gone forever are the

days of low-cost energy; gone forever

are the days of hiring a person “off the

street” with the skills, knowledge and

experience to immediately be productive

in your business. Times have really

changed! To stay competitive, to make a

profit and, ultimately, to stay in business,

companies must change drastically the

way in which they manage their operations.

As a direct result of these changes in

the business environment, the assets of

a company are much more valuable and

critical than ever before. Consequently,

the importance of managing assets efficiently

and effectively has become a critical

business reality.

Today’s oil and gas industry must initiate

an aggressive asset management program

that will:

• Protect and enhance the value of

assets with the best possible maintenance

and reliability practices

and methods

• Ensure real care in the daily operation

and use of assets

• Expand and improve the technical

and administrative skills of its


• Improve maintenance productivity

• Increase considerably the reliability

and life of their assets.

• Ensure asset integrity through

best-in-class maintenance and reliability


Great strides are being made in many

companies today to put in place a maintenance

program that recognizes and

addresses these needs. Much remains

to be done to ensure the maintenance

and planning and scheduling links in

the World Class chain to reach the state

of fully optimizing their potential. To

ensure this happens, the appropriate

processes and management of the components

must be in place.

Management control means that each

person in the process manages his or her

piece effectively as part of a fully planned

and scheduled process. All data is collected

and processed in the corporate CMMS

system so that equipment dynamics is

fully understood and all performance and

cost is measured and quantified.

Without management control, costs

pile up because of inefficient planning

and scheduling. It is estimated that a

repair job done on an emergency basis

requires three to four times more manpower,

time and money than a scheduled

repair. Besides that, many maintenance

costs are hidden, such as the cost of shutting

down a unit for repair or the cost

of deferred production and disrupted


Even worse is the fact that a high percentage

of all maintenance time, cost and

energy are spent on reactive activities.

Typically, reactive maintenance is 60 to

70 percent less efficient than planned and

scheduled maintenance.

Determining these costs is difficult because

most plants do not keep adequate

records of maintenance work [who/

what/when/where/why] or how much

each repair activity costs, and very little

analysis is done to determine why a

piece of equipment fails. The economics

of a good maintenance program show up

in increased utilization of equipment.

Unfortunately, few companies keep adequate

records of that utilization.

Poor management of maintenance

spare parts inventories is another costly

item. In one recorded instance, only half

of the available spare parts and materials

were inventoried. Think of it thousands

of dollars’ worth of valuable materials

are lying around in a storeroom or

even in some corner somewhere, and no

one knows what it is or, in some cases,

where it is. This kind of a situation is not

uncommon in many companies today.

While this deficiency represents significant

cost impact due to lost maintenance

wrench time, it pales in size when compared

to the cost of equipment downtime,

due to not having the right parts at the

right time. Most parts warehouses contain

10’s, 100’s, or 1000’s of parts that are

already “broken” before they are ever

issued in the field for installation into

4/2018 maintworld 19


critical equipment - bearings out of their

boxes; electronics out of their anti-static

bags; elastomeric parts whose shelf life

expired two years ago; un-bagged filters

lying in dirty bins; motors stored standing

on their shaft; un-tagged, worn out butreparable

spares inadvertently intermingled

and stored with the ready-for-use

spares. And, of course, the ubiquitous,

well cared for spare parts that only fit a

machine that was retired and hauled to

the scrap yard ten years ago.

Another major cost is the lack of coordination

between the maintenance

operation and production. Maintenance

crews often show up to carry out work

on a piece of equipment only to find the

equipment is not available to be worked

on. In addition, much time is spent attempting

to convince production managers

that it is sometimes necessary to

overhaul a piece of equipment before it

breaks down.

A major reason for these conflicts is

the misconception that production’s objective

is to produce and maintenance’s

objective is to fix. Likely, production is

king and maintenance is a service whose

job is to get things running after they

break. As long as maintenance is viewed

as a “fix-it” organization by production,

there is absolutely no incentive to hold

down costs by completing preventative

or predictive maintenance procedures, or

performing planned and scheduled work.

Someone needs to develop a better, more

convincing way to explain the underlying

truth of the old adage “you can pay me

now … or you can pay me later”

Changing business conditions have

been forcing companies to re-examine

20 maintworld 4/2018

their maintenance operations, and there

is evidence of limited improvement. One

reason for the growing attention is that

the need for maintenance has increased

as plants have become more automated

and equipment more sophisticated. Beyond

these reasons, with many plants at

or near capacity and facing rising production

costs, unscheduled downtime resulting

from poorly managed maintenance

operations has become increasingly

intolerable. Slowly and surely, over the

past thirty years or so, this imperative has

driven organizational change at successful

companies, resulting in the rebirth of

the maintenance organization as a modern,

progressive contributor to the bottom

line. Unfortunately, many of those

companies that have failed to see the light,

have been driven from the market place.

Rising energy costs have provided

another incentive for companies to maintain

their equipment at peak efficiency. It

should be remembered that energy costs

rose significantly in recent years, and

based on current trends they will continue

to rise.

Maintenance can contribute significantly

to energy conservation because

well-running machines require less

energy than a machine that needs repair.

A well-running machine is also a safer

machine. Oil and gas production companies

must contend with a growing array

of regulatory issues. Stricter government

safety regulations have been a further

impetus to better maintenance. The

Clean Air Act, OSHA, other government

regulatory agencies and internal safety,

environmental, and health requirements,

add additional concerns and constraints.

Post-BP Gulf oil spill, you can expect a

whole new massive round of regulatory

rule making for the oil and gas industry.

Going Forward

Successful companies are also changing

the whole concept of the maintenance

operation. The emphasis has switched

from fixing machines to keeping them

running, and increasing equipment reliability

to levels unobtainable ten years

ago, unheard of thirty years ago.

The modern maintenance organization

has tools at their disposal ranging

from Reliability Centered Maintenance

(RCM), Preventive Maintenance Optimization

(PMO), huge multifunctional

integrated Enterprise Resource Planning

tools (CMMS) such as SAP, Root Cause

Failure Analysis, Maintenance Planning

and Scheduling, and a host of other fully

mature management technologies and

strategies that lend themselves to achieving

best-in-class performance among

peers. Finally, with the advent of Industry

4.0 or Digital Asset Management,

companies are reaching for unprecedented

levels of performance through data

analytics and real time operations.

Optimizing the maintenance organization’s

contribution is more than just

spending more time on the tools – [In

fact, it should lead to significantly less

time on the tools!]. It involves employing

techniques and methods that focus on

eliminating waste and redundancy and

increasing efficiency and effectiveness.

The best organizations view maintenance

as a sophisticated process that requires

dedicated professional staff to manage

it, while continuously seeking ways to


The maintenance organization today

is no longer a necessary evil or afterthought

but a core part of the business,

that if properly deployed can create a

strategic long-term advantage. The best

organizations believe that the best maintenance

is also the lowest cost maintenance.

The impact of good maintenance

goes beyond the operational bottom-line

and also positively impacts safety, integrity

and reliability of the organization’s

physical assets. In order to compete in

today’s economic environment, maintenance

must be elevated to a strategic level

on par with operations and engineering.

Those companies that have achieved

this are now the pace setters in industry.

Those that won’t, can’t, never will, will





How to

Benchmark your

Mechanical Assets

Failed assets can quickly ruin your day. As any facility manager can attest, an asset

that fails unexpectedly takes time and money away from the business. With the

right tools and methods, however, any maintenance team can detect and solve

problems within mechanical assets before they break. Here's how benchmarking

and ultrasonic technology can improve how your facility prevents asset failure.


CMRP, UE Systems,

HAVING A STANDARD by which to judge

your mechanical assets enables you to

create a condition monitoring system

that optimizes your facility's productivity

and efficiency. When developing a

maintenance schedule for your facility's

mechanical assets, you may choose to

set your own benchmarks, or use industry

standards. If you want your assets

to be the best of the best, defining your

own benchmarks may be a good option,

as this will allow you to make process

22 maintworld 4/2018

modifications and check the outcomes

against your previous data.

Benchmarking and monitoring your

mechanical assets has a number of benefits,

including cost saving, productivity

optimization and reduced downtime.

When an asset fails completely, it can

wreak havoc on your entire facility.

Downtime not only means lost productivity,

but also increased costs. At the

same time, an overactive preventative

maintenance schedule can be likewise

detrimental to your budget. For example,

if your maintenance teams spend

hours every week running diagnostics on

mechanical assets, but only finds an issue

once every few months, you could be

spending more than you need to.

By recording benchmarks for each

of your assets and monitoring key performance

indicators, you enable your

maintenance team to make informed

decisions about which assets should be

inspected at a certain time. And there

are a number of ways you can formulate

that schedule, depending on the asset in

question. For example, you could check

KPIs every time a vital asset is in use, or

you could perform a manual inspection

at regular intervals.

Ultimately, it all comes down to the

kind of data that is available to your

team. If your maintenance staff only

relies on visual information to detect an

impending breakdown, there is a good

chance your condition-based maintenance

strategy will not perform very

well. An effective condition monitoring

plan should have a solid foundation of

reliable data. But how do you collect it?


First, you will need the right monitoring

equipment. Then, you will need to establish

benchmarks for future use.

How Ultrasound Technology

Provides Actionable Insights

Facilities with lots of mechanical assets

tend to be noisy. An asset could be

shrieking its last warning, but the human

ear may not be able to hear it. And

when you want to find problems early,

you need a solution that can detect early

warning signs. If your team is able to discover

and repair small problems before

they become big issues, your facility will

save time and money.

Continuous Monitoring

To detect impending mechanical failures,

you can rely on ultrasonic monitoring

technology to give you an advanced

warning. Let's say you purchase a new

asset and monitor its work for a week

to develop a benchmark. Then, at some

point in the future, the asset begins to

underperform, relative to that standard.

A remote ultrasonic sensor such as the

Ultra-Trak 750 will detect anomalies

based on pre-set thresholds and warn

your staff when something goes awry.

The UltraTrak 750 is a permanent sensor

that can provide benchmarking

information on a remote continuous

basis, and the data can be sent directly to

PLC’s for alarms, or any other platform

where 4 to 20-milliamp information can

be sent.

Another solution for continuous

monitoring is the 4Cast, used in conjunction

with permanently mounted

Benchmarks and KPIs

are necessary for any

condition monitoring

system, and they need

to rely on accurate,

trustworthy data.




Remote Access Sensors (RAS). The

4Cast will also monitor your assets 24/7

by getting decibel readings from the sensors

and send them via an Ethernet connection

to a data management software

(DMS), where alarms can be setup based

on the benchmarking data. The 4Cast

can also record sound files from the assets,

which can be later analysed in a

spectrum analysis software like Spectralyzer.

Due to its online connection, the

4Cast is a very adequate tool to closely

monitor critical assets.

Hand Held Ultrasonic


Likewise, a hand held instrument as the

Ultraprobe 15000 gives maintenance

staff the power to hear and detect minute

changes in asset performance so

that they can make informed decisions

about how best to maintain those assets.

This instrument allows technicians to

read and manipulate data in-device, or

transfer the data to a computer for further


Also, we should note how important

it is to benchmark the lubrication of new

motors and rotating equipment, since

lubrication issues are one of the major

causes for bearing failure. An instrument

like the Ultraprobe 401 Digital Grease

Caddy can also play an important role in

optimizing lubrication PM’s on both the

amount of grease that needs to be added

and the frequency or how often the

equipment is being lubricated.


Benchmarks and KPIs are necessary for

any condition monitoring system, and

they need to rely on accurate, trustworthy

data. Ultrasonic technology can provide

the highly granular data your team

needs to stay one step ahead of asset failures.

A combination of remote sensors

and personal devices will give your team

the competitive edge.

4/2018 maintworld 23


How to Choose

an Air Compressor,

According to Science –

8 Factors to Consider

Buying an air compressor, for the first time, can be challenging in many ways.

There is a lot going on behind this power tool that offers faster and more efficient

performance. Before we get to know about the details of an air compressor then,

let’s understand how it works. How do air compressors work?

Text: Jen Miller at Jenreviews

AN AIR COMPRESSOR turns electrical energy

into powerful kinetic energy. It is a

lightweight and portable tool for powering

other compact and handy tools such

as impact wrenches, sanders, drills, and

such. The purpose of an air compressor

lies in factories, garages, and even in

homes. For appliances that need a constant

supply of a higher volume of air, an

air compressor is very useful.

For professionals completing a job,

operating other handy tools with the

help of an air compressor comes with

many benefits. It is not all about an air

compressor’s quick and efficient deliverance.

The following factors will give you a

clear understanding of how air compressors

work. With this knowledge you can

stay rest assured when choosing the best

air compressor for your needs.

1. Piston or Portable Air

Compressors - Which is Best?

The most basic types of air compressors

are piston and portable. The former

depends on a functioning motor, which

promotes air pressure during the depletion

process. This means it relies on the

air pressure increases with an increase

in usage. It comes with a tank that keeps

it grounded in one place for as long as

you use it.

24 maintworld 4/2018

Portable air compressors come

without tanks; they carry out the same

function of a piston air compressor, but

are portable enough to move around the


The air compressed in a piston compressor’s

tank requires heavy-duty maintenance.

And when compared to portable

air compressors, they are a better

fit for high-end, commercial jobs than

menial work.

The advantage of portable compressors

is that they deliver continuous air

pressure, with minimal footprint. This

makes them more suited to light household


You will find two sub-types of a piston

air compressor: single-stage and dual- or

two-stage. Compressors with singlestage

functionality exhaust only a single

piston for air compression. And they go

as high as 150 psi.

Two-stage air compressors make

complete use of 2 pistons, delivering

constant air pressure at 200 psi. A

single-stage compressor is perfect for

small to bigger tasks, but for home use.

Meanwhile, two-stage compressors suit

commercial jobs that require continuous

air pressure.

For a single-stage air compressor,

the motor draws in air and compresses

it with air pressure in every rotation. So

it requires a higher CFM rating than a

dual-stage compressor.

For a dual-stage air compressor, the

first step sucks the air in and compresses

it immediately. This is followed by the

compressed air being piped with the help

of an intercooler to be released in its

final stage.

In hindsight, a two-stage air compressor

is more energy-efficient and effective

than a single-stage unit. This is because

in a two-stage compressor the higher air

pressures are cooled in-between stages

for better air pressure release.

If you are using a portable air compressor,

it has certain applications

such as for powering pneumatic tools,

pumps, pipes, and common home-use

equipment. You can use one to increase

efficiency and speed, in lesser time, as

compared to using a single-piston air


At the end of the day, using any one

kind is a matter of convenience and personal

preference. Both types are easy to

use with practical usability.

As for the price, buying a piston air

compressor is more expensive than a

portable one. The main reason being that

a piston air compressor comes with an

air pressure storage tank and a portable

on is mostly handheld.

Several pneumatic tools require more

or less compressed air. This factors in

the cubic feet per minute measure of

an air compressor. When sizing an air

compressor in terms of functionality,


Technical Illustration of Rotary-Screw Compression system (Brian S. Elliott)

you can determine the ideal type based

on its CFM range, and not the horsepower

range. This saves time, space, and


After considering all these factors, it is

safe to say that you get what you pay for

when choosing an air compressor. Based

on the cubic feet per minute, maximum

air pressure, motor settings, and storage

tank size of an air compressor, it is easier

to find the right fit for a unit.

You need to be able to determine

whether you can roll or push or pull the

air compressor easily. It is true that there

are portable and compact air compressors

like the best pancake compressor,

but they might not possess the features

you are looking for. If you are investing

in a model for longer use, buying a higher

capacity compressor is more appropriate.

Finally, you need to ask yourself

whether your compact air compressor

will be able to power a nail gun as effectively

as fill tires in your garage?

5. Don’t Forget The CFM


To keep things going, considering CFM

or Cubic Feet per Minute is equally important.

It is the final volumetric flow

measure of an air compressor. But here’s

the catch, determining the CFM of any

unit depends on its psi range.

When you are calculating two units’

CFM measurements, it is important

that both possess the same psi level. If

they are different, your calculation will

be wrong. To make things easy, Here is a

simple run-through for taking the CFM

measurement of an air compressor.

Check the standard cubic feet per

minute measure of an air compressor.

Note that SCFM is generally measured

as 14.5 PSIA, at 68 degrees Fahrenheit,

and 0% humidity level. Just in case this

is too complicated for you, use only the

CFM measure of various air compressors.

But all should remain the same.

Once you have the SCFM measure of

each tool, add up the numbers and increase

by 30%. This is so you have plenty

of room to work with. The final calculation

will give you an exact measure, the

number you need to work on and check

for when choosing an air compressor.

You might not find an air compressor

of the exact measurement, but it is important

to get as close to the number as


In other words, the CFM range can

determine how much air pressure the air

compressor delivers, per minute. This

rating is important because it lets you

know the air output for proper performance

of any unit.

So how can you use the CFM to power

multiple tools at one time? This we

shall determine on a range of small to

large tools. If you are operating multiple

larger tools at one time, you will need

more CFM ratings. On the other hand,

for smaller pneumatic tools, the compression

operation varies based on its

psi ratings.

But the best and most convenient way

to make the most of your air compression

is by its SCFM ratings. Because

here you calculate all the necessary

details, including the psi ratings back to

its standard settings. So you can use the

air compressor for your desired purpose

without compromising on quality.

The last thing I woud like to mention

regarding CFM is comparing different

ratings of different units. Looking

for other CFM-related factors such as

temperature, altitude, and humidity is

important. This helps to look at different

air volumes and pressures.

Other factors such as heat dissipation,

atmospheric pressure, and friction do

not fall under CFM ratings. These variables

can be taken into consideration

when looking at individual features of an

air compressor. This differs from unit to


6. How Much Space

Does It Need?

Every machine on the market comes in

either a large and more powerful design

or a small and portable version. That’s

the way technology works, isn’t it? No

wonder we, as humans, are so spoiled for

4/2018 maintworld 25



Getting back to the size of the air

compressor, it all depends on what you

need the most. Are you going to lift the

fixture off the floor or roll it? In any case,

portability always brings more convenience

to the table.

But if you are absolutely sure that the

air compressor is going to rest in peace

in a single corner of your garage, then

the situation doesn’t demand portability.

Instead, what you need is a comparatively

longer hose. And this particular

feature is only present in high capacity


Before I discuss the tank size, let me

tell you something crucial about portability.

The factor is not concerned with

just the weight of the machine. Even a

lightweight air compressor might be difficult

to carry if it is too wide in shape. So

don’t forget to take the shape of the unit

into consideration as well. Slim compressors

are easy and convenient to carry

with you. But their broader-designed

counterparts aren’t.

Now it is time to discuss the size of

the tank. In the case of tank-mounted

units, you have to decide how large the

tank would be, and this depends on the

use of the air compressor. For example,

if you need a compressor for short-lived

tasks, a small tank size might be an ideal

choice for you. On the other hand, bigger

tanks are more suitable for heavy-duty


The longer the process, the higher

the gallons, am I right? And it works the

other way around for shorter or lighter


Since the purpose of the tank size is

set into place, I can move on to talking

about efficiency. What I mean to say is

that the size of an air compressor’s tank

helps in determining the amount of time

the air tools run without the unit turning

back on.

Tanks come in gallons, right? So you

get size options ranging from as small as

one gallon to as large as 80 gallons.

When working with air tools or

equipment that demands high air volume

for continued use, nothing beats

the efficiency of the larger-sized tank.

Alternatively, intermittent use of the

tools doesn’t require an air compressor

with a big tank. A small size is more than

enough for such jobs.

Here’s something you ought to know

about large tanks. These feature the useful

compressor pump with a SCFM tool

26 maintworld 4/2018

requirement that exceeds the normal

value. Such a composition allows the

unit to cool down between cycles.

Tools and equipment that demand a

quick, short round of air tend to exhaust

the tank relatively slower. So it is safe for

me to say that for such purposes, anything

between two and six gallons is perfect

for the job. This means finish nailers

and pneumatic brad don’t demand the

use of large air compression tanks.

7. Checking The Pump Settings

In this category, there are two basic

configurations. Reciprocating air compressors

have single stage and two stage

pumps. These two are primary settings,

so let’s discuss them before I talk about

the other secondary pump types.

Air compressors with the single stage

pump setting draw in and compress the

air in one piston stroke. This means that

the air reaches the final pressure with a

single stroke. These types of units have

the ability to achieve pressure as high as

150 psi.

Normally, the single stage machine

has a comparatively higher CFM value

than its two-stage counterpart. And why

do you think that is? It is because each

cylinder of the unit not only draws in

the air but also compresses it with every


By now, I am sure you understand

the difference between the two different

pump settings. With a two-stage machine,

the air is compressed in not one,

but two steps. During the initial stage,

the unit draws in the air and compresses

it down to the intermediate pressure.

Soon after, this air travels through the

intercooler to get ready for the second or

final stage.

You should know that the two-stage

pump setting is an ideal choice for pressures

that reach 200 psi. It is considered

to be more efficient than the single stage

pump when using higher pressures. And

that is because in the case of the former,

the air goes through the process of cooling

between the first and second stages.

Now that you know the primary settings,

it is time to discuss the secondary

ones. These are oil-free and oil-lubricated

air compressors. Roll cages, aircooling

systems, and thermal overload


switch are the kinds of features that

protect both the machine and you from

accidents or damage while working.

To make it easier for you to understand

the different pump types, I have

listed all of them below.

Oil-free air compressors: The oilfree

units use unique piston rings built

with materials that are similar to those

required for manufacturing non-stick

cooking pans. These rings lubricate the

machine’s cylinder.

Due to the absence of oil, these types

of compressors are relatively lighter and

smaller than their oil-lubricated kin.

This means they are suitable for home

and work applications as the portability

factor comes into play here.

Oil-lubricated air compressors: The

engine of a lawn mower or car requires

oil to function, right? This also applies to

certain kinds of air compressors. What

the oil does is lubricate the unit’s moving

parts present in its pump. It also contributes

to preventing excessive wear.

Oil-lubricated air compressors are

heavier and larger than the oil-free version,

and they require regular maintenance.

If you don’t change and monitor

the oil, it can lead to premature failure.

Single stage air compressors: More

often than not, these come with a single

cylinder that compresses air using the

same output strength.

Two stage air compressors: The two

stage units have two cylinders. The first

one feeds air and prepares it to enter the

second cylinder; it is in the second cylinder

that the process of air compression

takes place.

Two stage compressors have tank

pressure that reaches 200 psi. They have

the upper hand when compared to the

single stage machines. That is because

two stage pump settings store more

air, which allows a longer tool-working

time. Such a characteristic is suitable for

heavy-duty tasks like continued tool operation

when working in any auto shop.

8. What Kind Of Features

Does It Offer?

If you want to get an air compressor that

meets all your needs and requirements,

then you have to know all about its features.

This way you have a better understanding

of what you might require to

make your job easier.

Thermal protection: This component

comes in the form of a thermal

overload switch and is responsible for

stopping the motor. The switch turns off

the motor automatically when it overheats.

So you get an increased tool life,

don’t you? In fact, thermal protection

prevents the unit from damage due to

overloads. If you wish to safeguard your

investments, please make sure that you

get an air compressor with the thermal

overload switch.

Oil-free pump: When the compressor

has an oil-free designed pump, what

does that mean? It reduces the cost and

effort of maintenance. Such a composition

also eliminates the possibility of the

oil and compressed air mixing together.

Multiple couplers: A unit with multiple

couplers gives you the fantastic opportunity

to handle many tasks, without

having to connect and disconnect the

tools to achieve the desired results.

Belt-drive system: As opposed to

direct-drive systems, the belt-drive versions

offer a quiet operation. This is why

the majority of people opt for belt-drive

instead of direct-drive.

Air-cooling system: This is pretty

much self-explanatory, isn’t it? With

an air-cooling feature, your pumping

machinery remains cool throughout the

procedure. It also contributes to extending

the shelf life of the motor.

Adjustable exhaust: Such an element

directs the exhaust of the air compressor

away from the working area. And we all

know how beneficial that is.

Roll cage: The roll cage is responsible

for protecting the unit from severe

damage on your job site. Compressors

are often subjected to being battered or

crushed. But the chances of accidents

like this taking place are highly unlikely

if you buy an air compressor with a roll


ASME certification: It is always a

better idea to look for a certified model

as that indicates the use of high-quality

craftsmanship and materials. You can

look for the certification label on the

unit’s tank. This label states that the

machine lives up to the standards and requirements

of ASME (American Society

of Mechanical Engineers)

Cord wrap: Many air compressor

manufacturing companies provide tons

of convenience when it comes to wrapping

up the invaluable power cord. Easy

carrying and storage are essential, adding

more comfort to the whole experience.

Ball valve drain: When water is

subjected to condensation in the tank, it

causes pinhole leaks and rusting. To prevent

such a tragedy from taking place, it

is important to drain the compressor’s

tank regularly.

All the tanks of air compressors come

with drains, right? But the type of drain

matters. The drain cock design is slightly

complicated and requires the use of pliers.

On the other hand, the ball valve

drain offers more comfort and convenience

when it comes to usability.

Other accessories: These include

inflation components, hoses, blow guns,

and nailers. What they do is add more

value to the purchase.


Now that the technicalities are all settled,

the responsibility to choose the best

air compressor falls on your shoulders.

It is always good to exceed your own expectations

when it comes to buying large

appliances. But with the right kind of

information by your side, buying a stable

and energy-efficient appliance that will

last for years isn’t undemanding.

This handy guide will keep you wellinformed

about the way an air compressor

functions, its best features and

significant benefits. You will be able to

operate an air compressor more effectively

after you are done with this guide.

And if that is not enough, I would advise

you to print it out and ask a local shop

owner some technical questions to get

the right model.

The most important consideration

for choosing air compressors is the

performance ratings. Is the compressor

energy-efficient? Can it handle multiple

pneumatic tools at once? And is it durable?

While there are single and double

stage compressors, finding your ideal

unit will take time. And sorting your

budget out to fit in some extra features

such as a roll cage, thermal switch, durable

cover, and a cooling system isn’t a

bad idea.

Investing in an air compressor for

your home projects will cost you for

years to come. So choosing wisely and

with proper know-how is essential. You

won’t believe how modern air compressors

are finding their true calling in more

and more workshops and home garages.

They are fit to handle all sorts of tasks

from power tools to inflating toys. You

can buy your ideal type right away from a

local home centre, for the right cost!

4/2018 maintworld 27


Big Data & Statistics

Level 1

Visual inspections

Level 2



Level 3

Real-time condition


Level 4

pdM 4.0




Research report:


Maintenance 4.0

Text: Nina Garlo-Melkas

A growing number of companies want to

use big data analytics in their predictive

maintenance and are also investing in the

resources needed for this. Of the companies

already using this technology, no

less than 95 percent say that they have

already achieved concrete results. This is

the conclusion of a follow-up study conducted

by PwC and Mainnovation among

268 companies in the Netherlands, Germany

and Belgium.

FOLLOWING THE 2017 STUDY into the maturity of companies

in the field of predictive maintenance with big data analytics,

PwC’s Michel Mulders and Mark Haarman, managing

partner at Mainnovation, wanted to know to what extent

companies have taken steps in the past year. Predictive

maintenance with big data, level four within the maturity

model, is called 'predictive maintenance 4.0' or PdM 4.0.

PdM 4.0 makes it possible to predict failures that had been

unpredictable up to now.

- We were interested to find out whether awareness of PdM

4.0 has grown, whether more use is being made of data, and

in which areas investments are being made. But also the

reasons why companies do not start using PdM 4.0, and especially

what results the frontrunners in this field are achieving

with this technology, says Michel Mulders, partner and

28 maintworld 4/2018


industry lead Industrial Manufacturing at PwC.

Ninety-five percent of respondents indicated that PdM

4.0 is responsible for improving one or more key maintenance

value drivers (uptime improvement, cost savings, reducing

safety risks, extending asset lifetime). Meanwhile 60

percent of respondents managed to increase their 'uptime'

with PdM 4.0, with an average improvement of nine percent.

The survey also shows that companies that achieve the

greatest improvements in results thanks to PdM 4.0 clearly

distinguish themselves from the other respondents. These

'PdM 4.0 champions' make significantly more use of 'environmental

data' (such as weather conditions), characteristic

of big data, and involve data scientists, reliability engineers

and IT specialists in maintenance much more often.

Key findings

Despite the fact that the number of companies using predictive

maintenance with big data has remained stable,

the study shows that there are clear indications that many

companies have the ambition to increase their maturity in

predictive maintenance. Sixty percent of the companies

now indicate that they have concrete plans to use PdM 4.0,

a significant increase compared to 49 percent in 2017. They

clearly see the added value that PdM 4.0 can deliver.

More and more companies invest in competencies and

personnel in order to get the most out of PdM 4.0. The research

shows a sharp increase in the use of varied datasets,

more advanced data sources and data software, data platforms

and connectivity solutions. In comparison to 2017,

there is also an increase in the number of data scientists, IT

specialists and reliability engineers who are hired to realize

the ambition to make full use of PdM 4.0.

PdM 4.0 as a service

THERE ARE REASONS to expect ‘PdM 4.0 as a service’ to

become increasingly important, in particular for OEMs. For

instance, consider the ‘power-by-the-hour’ business model

adopted by some manufacturers of jet engines. Rather

than selling jet engines as a product, these manufacturers

sell its output – namely the power it generates - as a

service, which obviously gives them a major incentive to

improve reliability and uptime.

Continuous improvements in the digitization and connectivity

of industrial assets are allowing their performance

to be monitored remotely. As a result, OEMs that

collect asset performance data from their customer base

will have access to much richer data than is available to

individual users of these assets. In turn, this gives these

OEMs a distinct advantage when it comes to predictive


- We can thus speculate that OEMs will want to tap

into this advantage by offering PdM 4.0 as a service, and

that goals like ‘New revenue stream’ and ‘Better product

design’ will become increasingly important value drivers

for PdM 4.0, Mark Haarman, managing partner at Mainnovation


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How Many

Planners and

Supervisors Do We Need?

My personal free time has radically increased over the past six months. Our three

sons, all played ice hockey until very recently, which meant year-round weekend

travel up and down the East Coast, sometimes even driving to Detroit. It felt like a

road trip that never ended, and sometimes it was just plain impossible to stitch the

schedule together around three junior teams.



President of IDCON INC

in Raleigh NC, USA,

EVEN THOUGH I champion the idea of

my children doing what they love, I will

admit that more than once I sat rink-side

on my frozen behind wondering if I was

nuts. Driving around half a country—for

children’s ice hockey? I often thought

(and sometimes wished) that they would

30 maintworld 4/2018

probably lose interest and be on to the

next thing with a split-second’s notice,

any day.

Suddenly those secret wishes came

true. All three kids decided to replace

the hockey with long distance running. I

think they, too, felt that it was too much

travel, and they missed being home,

hanging with other friends, on some

weekends. The running pursuit only

requires one real trip per year, to the

Nationals, if they qualify, and the rest

of the time there’s plenty of good races,

much closer than Detroit, Chicago, New

York, and Washington DC. And now that

the 16-year-old has his driver’s license,

the logistics have enormously changed

for the better. So the time I once used for

coaching and planning travel for games

and tournaments, is now all mine - a true


During the hockey years, I spent

about 15-20 hours in cars, locker rooms

and hockey rinks—per week—trying to

squeeze work in whenever I could find

a few minutes. I often drew the parallel

between supervisors and planners in our

factories with the thankless job of being

a parent, shivering to the echo of pucks

hitting the ice. One question I get a lot


from executives in the maintenance industry

is: “How many planners and supervisors

do we need?” Unfortunately,

there are many consultants who go with

a standardized answer: “One planner

per every 16 worker, or one supervisor

per every 20.” It’s not that simple. Many

more factors play in to the numbers,

just as they do in the hockey-parent


The easiest way to determine how

many supervisors or planners one needs

is to take a look at the workload. This

differs from factory to factory and plant

to plant, but it is rooted in the organization,

work processes and the expertise

of the repair staff.

How is the Plant Organized?

Some plants have planners, schedulers

and supervisors, while others have stop

planners and daily planners separated.

A few keep electricity and instruments

from mechanical planners, while some

plants are more bare bones. It makes a

big difference if the planner can 100%

dedicate thier time to planning, instead

of having to take care of purchasing orders,

train workers in the CMMS, attend

improvement meetings, and so on. It is

the same thing with the supervisor role.

Can he or she focus on their team or are

they expected to run a few improvement

projects and renovations? The more we

tack on to these roles, the less time will

be left for leading their workers.

Good Work Processes and

Background Data are Pieces

to the Puzzle

Quick access to spare parts, specialty

tools, technical data, security standards

and permits can make a big difference.

If a plant is well organized, the planner

can plan a number of jobs, but if the

materials needed for actual planning

cannot be found, the workload per work

order increases, resulting in fewer jobs


Knowledgeable and

Independent Personnel

Just as a parent’s time demands are

more significant for a 15-year-old hockey

player than a 16-year-old long distance

runner with a car, a supervisor’s

time is better spent with inexperienced

versus knowledgeable personnel. If every

employee knows his or her job well

enough to work independently, fewer

supervisors are needed. (See figure 1)

I think supervisors, planners, and repair

personnel mainly build reliability.

Therefore, it is important to consider

the workload of your supervisors and

planners. How much interaction do

their workers need? Are jobs being

planned? Is data accessible? How many

different responsibilities are placed on

the planner or foremen, outside of their

regular duties?






When it comes to the workload for

hockey parents, I think we need extra

sets of parents, more hours in the day,

and an organizational method resembling

NASA’s command centre in Houston

in order to survive more than a few


I invite you to send me your comments

at questions to

and for more information about best

practices in reliability and maintenance

please click here for more articles.

The workload can be changed, depending on the plant’s work process, organization, and

expertise of the repair crew. Here is a graph:


and skilled


1 Planner to 8-10 tradespeople.

2 Supv. to 10-20 tradespeople.

1 Planner to 16-18 tradespeople.

2 Supv. to 20 tradespeople.



Skills and



1 Planner to 5-10 tradespeople.

1 Supervisor to 4-5 tradespeople.

1 Planner to 12-14 tradespeople.

1 Supervisor to 8-10 tradespeople.

Supervisor coach crafts.

Poor system


(planning, scheduling, techincal database, stores, etc.)

Great system

Figure 1. The number of planners and foremen needed primarily depends on the level of expertise among the repair personnel, and

how well the data and spare parts are organized.

4/2018 maintworld 31


Android phones so they could interact

with the robot right from their phones.


Makes Popular

MTConnect Better

MTConnect is a widely adopted standard for machine

tools, robots, and other manufacturing equipment as

confirmed at IMTS last month. MTConnect was promoted

in many of the 2,100+ exhibitor booths including

some of the largest exhibitors such as Mazak, Okuma,

Fanuc and many more.

THE AMT SPONSORED Emerging Technology

Center at IMTS also showed the

power of MTConnect. The MTConnect

Institute, NIST, Southwest Research

Institute, along with Hurco, Hexagon

Manufacturing Intelligence, and VIMA-

NA cooperated to demonstrate a closedloop,

PLC-free cell consisting of a CNC

mill, a robotic arm, and a Coordinate

32 maintworld 4/2018


Measuring Machine (CMM). Rather

than centrally orchestrated control to

autonomously load and unload parts,

the cell used MTConnect’s interfaces

function and logic at each component

of the cell. This was the first demonstration

with many-to-many orchestration

rather than simple one-to-one task management.

The OPC Foundation promoted the

MTConnect OPC UA Companion Specification

at its IMTS booth and its OPC

UA Seminar that was also held at the

IMTS show. Matrikon, in collaboration

with Beeond, Inc. showed off a robot

arm demonstration that implemented

the MTConnect information model.

To create this demo, Beeond wrote a

Matrikon® FLEX based OPC UA Server

that ran on a small NanoPi system and

utilized the MTConnect Companion

Specification. Visitors could use an iPad

running the Matrikon FLEX Explorer

for mobiles to connect to the OPC UA

Server, navigate its MTConnect address

sapce, and interact with the robot arm.

Especially popular was the option booth

visotors had of being able to download

the free Matrikon FLEX Explorer to

their own iOS and

The new OPC UA based MTConnect

standard elevates the popular MTConnect

standard to a new level by enforcing

rigorous data security and enabling open

data connectivity with the vast range of

new OPC UA enabled software applications

running on premise and in the

cloud. This is important as it opens the

doors to new markets for vendors who

implement the OPC UA based MTConnect

standard in their products.

A new MTConnect OPC UA Companion

Specification is set for release

in the October/November timeframe.

This companion specification will reflect

the full scope of the existing non-OPC

UA based MTConnect specification

and will retain backward compatibility.

To learn more about the MTConnect

standard or get involved with the OPC

UA-MTConnect working group, please

contact Stan Brubaker (stan.brubaker@ or Tom Copeland (tomc@ who co-chair the joint OPC

Foundation and MTConnect Institute

working group.


the hidden

treasure in



the hidden

treasure in


There is value hidden in every maintenance organization. All companies have the potential to further improve, either by reducing

costs, improve safety, work on the lifetime extension of machinery or by smart maintenance solutions that improves uptime. The

question is where maintenance managers should be looking to fi nd these areas of improvement and where they need to start.

You will fi nd the answer to this question at Mainnovation. With Value Driven Maintenance ® and the matching tools like the VDM

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Combining Machine and Human

Intelligence to Unlock Hidden

Value in Existing Process Data

Industrial companies are under pressure to drive value with advanced analytics

and machine learning. The promise of these technologies is compelling, but as

always, the devil lies in the details – which in the heavy industry context often

include the availability and quality of suitable data.


Productivity &

Digital Solutions,

Maintpartner Group

COMPANIES WONDER if their historical

CMMS data is accurate enough, new

sensors should be installed, or an IoT

platform to visualize new measurements

needs be deployed. These are frequent

and relevant questions when considering

how to apply AI and analytics in industrial

O&M. But, at the same time the

opportunity to work with high-quality,

accurate and automatically recorded data

already available might be overlooked.

We are talking about the process data in

the DCS or other information systems.

According to Maintpartner’s digital

solutions experts, there is plenty of

untapped potential in that data. With

strong analytics capabilities and the

right approach involving the process

specialists, early signs of emerging

equipment failures can be identified

well before they escalate – or suboptimal

operation of the can be process spotted.

Such online analytics can work as an

insurance against surprise downtime,

help shift from unplanned to planned

works and eliminate all sources of functional

or operational underperformance


Familiar data –

advanced analytics

Monitoring of signals against static upper

and lower bounds is easy and widely

used. But what about combinations of

34 maintworld 4/2018


several signals; what are normal values

for each in different operating conditions

and situations? What about the

time dimension; how long does it take

for actuators to react to controls or to

complete a motion from one extreme

position to another? This is where advanced

analytics is required to monitor

and draw new insights from the existing


Such complex connections and timeseries

patterns, and abnormalities in

these patterns in particular, are often

the early signs of emerging problems

that today seem to occur without any advance

warning. The warning signs would

have been there, hidden in the data, and

advanced analytics can make them visible

and actionable early enough to have

significant business impact. This ability

to identify potential issues early enough

to take a new course of action is what

differentiates really advanced analytics,

thus making them relevant to business

and top management.

Tacit knowledge capture

Computer algorithms are good at

crunching numbers. To some extent they

can also “learn” almost independently

by adjusting their parameters based on

a well-defined reward function or annotated

sample data. However, they cannot

think independently and need human

intelligence to get started and to become


A data-driven, human-guided modeling

approach takes a broad scope, e.g.,

thousands of signals from a whole plant,

and does a rough clustering of the tag

list based on the main sub-processes. A

light interview about the specific process

characteristics and typical challenges

opens a fast lane to well-structured models

right from the beginning. Unsupervised

machine learning digests a training




data period of all process measurements

and learns the correlations and dynamics

between the signals in different operational

situations. Now the system is

ready for online monitoring of live data

and it starts to raise warnings about abnormal

behavior relative to what it has

“seen” in the training data. Human experts

who know their process then rate

these warnings to be either true positive

(relevant) or false positive (accepted

behavior), and this rating information is

fed back to model retraining. Thus, the

model learns from human feedback on

real-time situations and converges towards

giving only correct and all correct


When such feedback is collected from



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Luckily, by tapping to the existing

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what your existing data can tell you, you

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data. And then you already know

how to use it valuably.

highly knowledgeable experts, either

as the warning ratings or interviewed

feed to other analytical models, the tacit

knowledge is captured into the AI. The

AI is able to share these insights across

the whole operator crew, which may be

highly relevant considering, e.g., retirement

of the legacy experts or unifying

operator shift performance.

Learning curve to drive value

Industrial AI is already moving beyond

proof-of-concepts to being delivered as

continuous operational services in selected

applications. The focus should be

on how the new applications drive value

creation rather than testing how specific

techniques and technologies work.

In industrial O&M, where human

decisions and actions are still in the loop

for the foreseeable future, real value is

not created by the new application alone.

It is at least as much about how the organization

uses the new (analytical) support

available, how it flows into the daily

practice of the O&M experts, planners

and operators. Take anomaly detection

as an example: who has the authority and

responsibility to act based on what the

machine suggests, how much evidence is

required to be sure to act upon a warning

or move from time-based to conditionbased

maintenance, how the systems are

used in practice, how reporting is done,

and so forth.

It takes commitment from the organization

and requires solid change

management to really make the new applications

and new ways of working with

the data an everyday practice. And only

then one creates sustainable value, instead

of just running a series of isolated

exercises. Despite all the talk about overwhelming

transformation, the AI is not

a magic wand – it takes some patience to

drive it to the finish line, but the journey

is a valuable learning path itself and the

end result is better adopted when the

user team has been involved in the validation


Maintpartner at the forefront

One of the players in the field is the

Finland-based Maintpartner. The company

has delivered its MP INtelligence®

advanced analytics service for several

years, productizing cutting-edge algorithmic

development that dates back by

more than a decade.

We believe in learning by doing in real

industrial environments. We have already

gained valuable knowledge on how

to deploy advanced anomaly detection

in energy, steel, pharmaceutical, aviation

and pulp & paper industries. The value

creation is at the core of our value proposition

and our customers are realizing

significant value through our actionable

insights. As an example, one of our customers

estimated 1.7-2.5 M€ of avoided

unavailability costs in 12 months.

MP INtelligence® is a service concept

powered by AI and machine learning. It

has been developed with the customers

in solving real-world problems. Maintpartner’s

experienced team delivers a

streamlined implementation process

from data connections to operational

online models, with constant backend

support from the Control Tower. MP Intelligence’s

data-driven, human-guided

model has been proven to work and is

fast to implement. Online model validation

can begin in just a few weeks from

the kick-off via the web UI, with a scope

that covers even the whole plant.

MP INtelligence® has a web-based user interface, specifically designed for handling

anomaly detection warnings and time series visualization.

36 maintworld 4/2018




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Maintenance 4.0

hype or game changer?

Last September Antwerp (Belgium) hosted

the Euromaintenance 4.0 conference.

With 1187 participants from 64 different

countries, the European maintenance

federation EFNMS and the organisers

BEMAS (Belgian Maintenance Association)

and can look back on

a very successful initiative. The massive

interest and very positive vibe that

prevailed confirm that maintenance 4.0

is currently at the centre of attention.

But is this really justified? Isn't the whole

buzz surrounding the Industrial Internet

of Things (IIoT) just a hype that will have

faded in a year's time?

A HYPE IS a phenomenon that temporarily receives excessive

attention and therefore seems more important than it actually

is. It can be an advertising stunt or be triggered by media

coverage. In any case, we cannot deny that the media attention

for IIoT and industry 4.0 is very high. With this editorial,

I am obviously also complicit in this.

Research and consultancy firm Gartner, however, shows

that in the information technology sector it is better to speak

of a hype cycle. When a potential technology breakthrough

kicks off, early publicity produces a number of success

stories. After a while the new technology is at its top of visibility,

resulting in a peak of inflated expectations. In its 2018

emerging technologies hype cycle, Gartner put the IoT just

over top, ready do slide down to the depts of disillusionment.

And yes, this surely does reaffirm the sceptical nature of our

rather conservative maintenance & reliability community,

doesn’t it? And yes of course, certain maintenance 4.0 implementations

will fail to deliver. But don’t be mistaken: behind

the horizon lurks the rising Plateau of Productivity. Those

adopting the new technology will learn from the early mis-

38 maintworld 4/2018

The Uptimization Experts.

What does


mean to you?


takes and build out a significant competitive advantage over

the ones that are lagging behind. And then of course, Mainstream

adoption starts to take off.

Surfing the wave of the hype

Talking about mainstream, what do you think comes to mind

when the general public hears the word ‘technology’? Do they

think of electrical motors, compressors or any other industrial

assets? Or do the latest smartphones and game consoles pop

up before their eyes? When economists announce that ‘technology

stocks are down’, we all know they’re talking about Apple,

Microsoft, Facebook or Amazon. So, with our limited scope

of attention, technology has in the past decades been implicitly

restricted to software and objects with pixels and a backlight.

Being new and exciting, these things got the complete attention

of the general public. However, in spite of the efforts of

the marketing departments, the latest generation smartphone

with another extra camera on the back does not make customers

wait in line for days anymore.

Eventually, technology fades into the patterns of everyday

life. In the long run, it’s the destiny of all technology. And for

many years this has been the unfortunate case for the industrial


With the arrival of IIoT and the industry 4.0 hype, industrial

assets are put in the technology spotlights again. Working in

the world of “industrial things” used to be unnoticed and uninteresting,

but – thanks to digitization – it has become “cool”


Thanks to predictive analytics and IoT we are currently

living in an unprecedented era of renewed interest in maintenance

and reliability. Suddenly business leaders can appreciate

the benefits to be gained by investing in reliability again. And

that, dear reader, is only one of many reasons why we need to

embrace this digital transformation and grab the opportunities

it creates in our profession.


Technology Trigger

Peak of Inflated Expectations

Plateau of Productivity

Slope of Enlightenment

Through of Disillusionment



40 maintworld 4/2018

Data Collector

Detect, Measure, Analyze

Ultrasound and


Ultrasound Soluons





Analysis Software


Hazards in the

Food Processing


Text: Matt Wastradowski, Graphic Products

42 maintworld 4/2018


YET EVEN with technological advances

and new regulations, workers in the food

processing and manufacturing industry

continue to face numerous health risks

more than a century later. More than

19,000 food-manufacturing employees

were injured on the job in 2015, and

nearly 50 industry workers were killed

each year between 2011 and 2015.

What are some of the common hazards

workers encounter, and how can

employers keep them safe on the job?

Here’s a look at safety in the food processing

and manufacturing industry.

Machinery Hazards

Machines used to clean, process, and

package food are wrought with risks and

hazards. Each year, more than 700 U.S.

workers are killed in machine-related

accidents, and another 2,500 are injured.

These workers face a number of hazards,

including conveyors with moving

or exposed parts, collapsing structures,

falling objects, and compressed equipment.

For all the dangers that come with

high-tech machinery, a few risks are

more common than most. Those include:

• Machine guarding: Employers

must provide guards to protect

workers from moving and/or exposed


• Lockout/Tagout (LO/TO): Machines

and electrical equipment

must be properly shut down, deenergized,

and locked out during

maintenance and servicing; when

proper precautions aren’t taken,

workers face increased risk of

burns and electrocution.

• Loud noises: They might seem like

a minor inconvenience, but loud

noises may prevent communication

between employees, increasing

the risk of injury.

LO/TO violations are routinely among

OSHA’s most-common citations every

year. Protect your workers and comply

with federal regulations: Download

Graphic Products’ free Best Practice

Guide to Lockout/Tagout for detailed

directions for establishing a LO/TO program,

as required by OSHA.

Safer food industry machinery

Conveyors are common in the food processing

and manufacturing industries,

and visual communication can protect

workers from hot surfaces, exposed and

moving parts, pressurized systems, and


The Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers

Association (CEMA) has

developed standardized safety labels to

keep workers safe around conveyors;

these designs comply with standards

established by ANSI and use three signal

words to communicate the seriousness

of a hazard:

• Danger signs and labels communicate

the most serious hazards,

where death or serious injury is

likely to occur if special precautions

are not taken.

Journalist and activist

Upton Sinclair revealed

the horrors of the food

processing and manufacturing

industry when

he wrote “The Jungle” in

1906. Sinclair’s groundbreaking

book offered a

behind-the-scenes look at

life in Chicago’s turn-ofthe-century


plants, and his unflinching

reporting led to industrywide

reform and improved

safety efforts throughout

the United States.

4/2018 maintworld 43


• Warning signs and labels outline

hazards that can result in death or

serious injury—but only when the

overall risk is not severe enough to

warrant a “Danger” sign.

• Caution signs describe hazards

that may lead to minor or moderate

injuries if not avoided.

Threats from

Release of Ammonia

Workers sustained 1,280 injuries from

exposure to harmful substances or environments

in 2015, and many of those

involved the toxic chemical anhydrous


Throughout the United States, anhydrous

ammonia is a popular refrigerant

in food processing and manufacturing

facilities. The substance can be found in

breweries, juice and soft drink processing

facilities, meat processing plants, and

other food processing plants.

Despite that ubiquity, ammonia poses

numerous risks to workers. Those hazards


• Corrosive: Ammonia can cause

damage to the skin, eyes, and


• Flammable: Ammonia can be lethal

at concentrations of roughly

15% to 28% by volume in air.

• Explosive: If released in enclosed

spaces with a source of ignition

present, ammonia can cause lifethreatening


Protecting food

workers from ammonia

For a safer environment, U.S.-based food

processing and manufacturing plants

must label all pipes that transport ammonia

in accordance with International

Institute for Ammonia Refrigeration

(IIAR) Bulletin No. 114, the accepted

standard for labelling ammonia refrigeration







The standard requires employers

to label system components, such as

compressors, pumps, and receivers, and

maintains that every ammonia pipe

marker include the following five components:

• Piping Abbreviation

• Physical State

• Pipe Contents

• Pressure Level

• Flow Direction

Each component label must include a

component identifier and indicate the

pressure level, as well.

Slip, Trip, and Fall Dangers

Slip, trip, and fall hazards are among the

most common causes of injury in both

the food manufacturing industry and

U.S. workplaces in general. In 2015 alone,

more than 4,500 workers were injured

in slips, trips, and falls, and 800 workers

were killed in slip, trip, and fall accidents.

Given the high volume of liquids used

in food manufacturing and processing,

workers are regularly exposed to wet and

unsafe surfaces. Workers can easily slip in

puddles of water, trip over uneven surfaces,

or fall when trying to access a platform.

44 maintworld 4/2018


OSHA’s standard for walking-working

surfaces, 29 CFR 1910.22, requires the

following for ensuring clean working


Workroom floors must be clean and

dry (whenever possible), and employers

must mitigate hazards caused by inclement

weather, loose boards, spills, and


Employers must provide drainage

and dry standing places (such as floor

mats) when wet processes are used in

commercial food processing plants and

other facilities.

All walking-working surfaces must be

inspected and maintained in safe, working


Reducing slips, trips, and falls

in the processing plant

Floor marking and wayfinding tape is

one of the easiest, most efficient solutions

for mitigating slip, trip, and fall


Here is how floor tapes help workers

stay upright, safe, and mobile:

• Tread Tape: Basic tread tape

helps workers “grip” the surface,

even when wet, preventing slips

and falls.

• Tread Plates: When working

on uneven or loose surfaces,

bolted-down tread plates help

improve traction in a variety of

conditions—and on a variety of


• Tread Caution Steps: Yellowand-black

textured plates keep

workers safe on steps, entryways,

ledges, and more.





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Ways to Identify and Eliminate Noise

Hazards in the Workplace


one of the most common workplace safety

concerns. Our hearing is sensitive and it

does not take much to temporarily impair

or permanently damage it. Noise hazards

vary widely in extremity and cause but no

matter if it is an airport terminal or demolition

site, steps must be taken to protect

workers’ hearing. When identifying potential

noise hazards in the workplace, the

first step is taking a second to consider

what qualifies a noise as a ‘hazard’.

When Is Noise A Hazard?

Noise is any sound that the human ear

finds unpleasing and disruptive to concentration.

When annoying sounds become

noise hazards is when that noise begins

interfering with communication and warning

signals on the job and causes chronic

health problems. These hazards occur

when sounds workers are exposed to are

greater than 85 decibels, weighted over

an eight hour shift. To give you an idea of

what exactly 85 decibels is: the rustling of

leaves is typically 10 decibels, a normal

conversation is between 50-60 decibels,

a chainsaw or drill produces 110 decibels

while a jet engine is near the top of end of

the scale producing about 140 decibels of


Identifying Noise Hazards

1. Look for the Signs — Look for existing

safety signage indicating known

noise hazards and the necessity of

PPE. Even if a work site is labelling,

it still may not be safe. If machinery

has been replaced or moved since

the signage was put up the noise

hazard may be more severe.

2. Shout at an Arm’s Length — The fastest

and easiest way to test if there is

a potential noise hazard in a specific

area of a job site is to have workers

stand at an arm’s length from

each other and have a conversation.

If one worker must raise their

voice or the other has a difficult

time hearing, there is most mostly

a noise hazard present. This is the

most practical way to keep employees

safe: if in that environment

they cannot hear a conversation at

arm’s length what are the odds they

can hear a cry for help or be heard,


3. Ringing or Humming. If you leave

work with any sort of ringing in

your ear, have difficulty hearing others

or you believe you can still hear

machines running, there is likelihood

you have suffered temporary hearing

damage. You should report this

to your supervisor immediately and

seek medical attention, if needed.

4. Related Health Issues. There are

a number of other serious health

issues that can be directly linked

to over exposure of occupational

noise hazards. Some related health

effects include: A decrease over

time in coordination and concentration,

sleeping issues and fatigue,

and an increase in nervousness and

stress which can be the beginning

of another set of health problems. If

you have experienced any of these

due to noisy working conditions,

immediately report the health conditions

to your supervisor.

There are two methods called ‘controls,’

used to eliminate noise hazards; administrative

and engineering. Administrative

controls are changes that can reduce or

eliminate worker exposure, while engineering

controls are changes that reduce

the sound levels in the facility. When

working to eliminate noise hazards, costs

add up. Here is a range of four cost-effective

ways to reduce or eliminate occupational

noise at any facility:

Eliminating Noise Hazards

1. Machine Maintenance — The number

one cost effective engineering

control used to reduce industrial

noise hazards is to make sure that

all machinery being used is properly

maintained. Machinery where

metal on metal contact is present

should be lubricated regularly. This

type of ‘preventative maintenance’

can extend the life of machinery and

save production time from unexpected

failures. In many cases, lowlevel

noise hazards can be solved

all together with proper machine

maintenance, as in this story of one

of North America’s top bottling companies.

2. Limit shifts — Limiting exactly how

long workers are exposed to noise

hazards is an administrative control

that can greatly reduce negative

health effects. This can be an alternative

to running a costly hearing

conservation program for employees,

but as this case study from the

American Industrial Hygiene Association

(AIHA) will tell you, the costs

associated with the time spent managing

noise hazards will always outweigh

the costs of attempting to fix

worker’s hearing.

3. Enclose or Isolate the Noise — This

is one way that a little engineering

combined with a little capital

can result in the reduction or elimination

of a noise hazard. If there

are large non-human operated

machines in a work area, when possible,

move these machines away

from workers or into less populated

rooms. If moving the machinery is

not an option, an enclosure can be

built and appropriately labelled to

reduce noise levels. If humans are

required as operators, an enclosure

with an entrance can be constructed

and proper PPE provided. Working

in these enclosures may require a

shorter shift, if the sound produced

inside the enclosure requires it.

4. Properly Used PPE — This is the

last resort method to deal with a

noise hazards. It does not address

the problem at the source but acts

as a last line of defence for your

ears. Proper PPE to protect hearing

includes earplugs and earmuffs,

often worn together. PPE should be

used either in response to low level

noise hazards or as a temporary

solution until the source of the noise

can be controlled or modified.

46 maintworld 4/2018

Source: ZVEI

The Industrial Interoperability Standard

OPC UA: Set for Industrie 4.0

OPC UA is a framework for Industrial Interoperability

➞ Modeling of data and interfaces for devices and services

➞ Integrated security by design with confi gurable access rights for data and services –

validated by German BSI security experts

➞ Extendable transport protocols: Client/Server and Publisher/Subscriber and roadmap for TSN

➞ Scalable from sensor to IT Enterprise & Cloud

➞ Independent from vendor, operating system, implementation language and vertical markets

Information models of different branches are mapped onto OPC UA to make them interoperable

with integrated security. The OPC Foundation closely cooperates with organizations and

associations from various branches:


German and english version



OPC UA is secure

Proved by experts

VDMA-Guideline OPC UA

ISBN 978-3-8163-0709-9

OPC UA ist requirement

in product-criteria catalogue

No Industrie 4.0 without OPC UA


OPC Unified Architecture

Interoperability for Industrie 4.0 and the Internet of Things


OPC UA Security Analysis



Industrie 4.0 Communication Guideline

Based on OPC UA

Industrie 4.0:

Product criteria for

Industrie 4.0 technologies

Which properties does a product need in order to be Industrie 4.0 compatible? The Reference

Architecture Model Industrie 4.0 and the Industrie 4.0 component provide a basic method and

orientation. Nonetheless, answering this question has been difficult until now. Currently there

are an immense number of terms and labels that appear to confirm the Industrie 4.0 or IoT

capabilities of products.





Therefore, based on the Reference Architecture Model

Industrie 4.0 (RAMI 4.0) and the Industrie 4.0 component,

ZVEI is developing manufacturer-independent

product criteria that will provide buyers with information

regarding the Industrie 4.0 capabilities of products

in the future. The product criteria are designed

so that they not only provide an orientation aid for

buyers, but will also become guidelines for manufacturers

when developing future Industrie 4.0 product

generations. They also highlight the need for research

and standards.

The Industrie 4.0 product criteria

The criteria are based on RAMI 4.0 and in particular

on the properties of the Industrie 4.0 component (see

figure 1). They are divided into three categories that

build on one another: Industrie 4.0 Basic, Industrie

4.0 Ready and Industrie 4.0 Full. To be placed in one

of these three categories, a product must fulfil all

the properties of the category in question. The distinguishing

features of the properties are the crossmanufacturer

approach and service orientation.

Figure 1: Product criteria are based on RAMI 4.0 and the Industrie 4.0 component

in cooperation with


Gunther Koschnick

Managing Director

Automation Division

Phone: +49 69 6302-318


Version: April 2016


Martin Hankel,

Bosch Rexroth

Industrie 4.0 component RAMI 4.0 Criteria for Industrie 4.0

Industrie 4.0 communication Architecture levels

Standard functions

Basic functions that are the same

regardless of device

Administration Shell


e.g. machine

Real Digital world


Industrie 4.0 semantics

A shared language


(vocabulary and sentence structure)

Virtual description

Industrie 4.0 services


Industrie 4.0 communication


That can map new services



Unique labeling of

physical things and data




“We deliver a complete solution – a CNC

machine automated with collaborative robot

technologies,” says Adam Asplund, sales

representative at Edströms.

Text: Malene Grouleff

Flexible Cobots Boost

Capacity and Satisfaction

at Swedish Machine Shop

FT-Produktion turned

to flexible collaborative

robots – cobots – to boost

productivity without

adding personnel. The new

technology also elevated

job satisfaction by bringing

variation to daily routines

– a key advantage in an

industry battling to attract

and retain qualified labour.

NO MACHINE SHOP in its right mind

would turn down global leaders like

Volvo, Renault and Scania when they

come calling with orders – even if it

means pushing capacity and productivity

to the limit. But in a labour market

where recruiting qualified employees is

easier said than done, it takes innovation

to increase output capacity.

To meet growing market demand,

the Swedish machine shop FT-Produktion

turned to specialised robot technology

designed to meet the automation

needs of small and medium-sized

manufacturing businesses.

- We chose a combination of solutions

from OnRobot, Universal Robots

and EasyRobotics because they are

easy to program. The investment in this

solution will pay for itself in just nine

months. Now we can fill significantly

bigger orders, says Joakim Karlberg,

who owns and operates the familyowned

machine shop FT-Produktion

together with his sister.

Based in the southern Swedish town

of Åseda and founded in 1983, FT-

Produktion has a diverse staff of 25 employees

with roots in Sweden, Norway,

Lithuania, Syria and Thailand. Work-

48 maintworld 4/2018


ing in tandem with the neighbouring

company Profilgruppen, FT-Produktion

supplies a wide range of customers,

including carmakers, construction companies,

and the furniture industry. The

company’s metal profiles measure up to

7.5 metres and are used in the manufacturing

of balconies, solar panels, electrical

fixtures and lorries. FT-Produktion

has annual turnover of SEK 19 million.

In 2017, the company made the largest

investments in its history by renovating

much of its machinery. A small share

of the overall investment went to a key

addition: the introduction of a flexible

robot cell comprising a UR5 cobot from

Universal Robots, two RG2 robot grippers

from OnRobot and a ProFeeder

from EasyRobotics. This effective trio

of Danish cobot solutions has now provided

automated machine operation at

FT-Produktion for more than a year. As a

result, the sales department can accommodate

orders with much higher volumes

and shorter delivery times – without

asking employees to work overtime.

- The demand for productivity continues

to grow. But relevant manpower

is hard to come by these days. Thanks

to automation, an operator can keep

three or four machines running at once

without stress. We try to eliminate monotonous

manual tasks by robotising

the high volume production runs, giving

employees more time to work on smaller

runs with greater variation in their tasks,

says Karlberg.

just five minutes to manually fill one of

the ProFeeder’s two movers. When the

robot has emptied one of the mover’s

parts trays, the operator removes the

empty mover and clicks a filled mover

into place in the ProFeeder, allowing the

CNC to rapidly resume operation. Using

the Lean Robot Automation concept

from EasyRobotics, the filling process

can be further optimised if the machine

shop places the parts for processing

directly into one of the mover’s parts

trays in the preceding step of the overall


- It seems like there’s no end to this

economic upswing, and therefore no

end to our bottleneck issues. So we can

already see many more opportunities for

improved optimisation and automation.

We’ll probably have an additional two

cobots in our facility within the next two

years, says Karlberg.

FT-Produktion discovered cobot

solutions during a meeting with the machinery

dealer Edströms, which supplies

and installs turnkey cobot solutions with

various processing machines. Edströms

also provides thorough training courses

for employees tasked with operating and

reconfiguring cobot arms, grippers and

filling modules.

A less monotonous

working day

Mikael Andersson is a machine technician

at FT-Production. One year ago,

he also became a robot programmer

and robot operator following two days

of theoretical and hands-on training

at Edströms. The training course was

based on the Universal Robots Academy

concept, which includes ongoing follow-

Streamlined filling processes

With the cobot cell, a run of 150,000

units can be manufactured in less than

two months with the robots working

up to 16 hours a day, five days a week.

Once every 25 seconds, a gripper on the

robot arm removes a raw part from the

ProFeeder’s parts tray in the mover and

inserts it in a CNC machine. In the same

robot arm movement, the other gripper

takes a finished part out of the CNC machine

and places it in a container. This

is made possible by the robot arm’s “two

hands”: an RG2 double gripper from

OnRobot that reduces the cycle time

by 12 seconds per task. In other words,

FT-Produktion saves 500 hours when

manufacturing a series of 150,000 parts.

In the past, an employee had to manually

insert four parts at a time in a CNC

machine, wait for 90 seconds, and then

repeat the process for the duration of

the workday. Now the solution requires

Working in tandem with the neighbouring company Profilgruppen, FT-Produktion

supplies a wide range of customers, including carmakers, construction companies, and

the furniture industry. The company’s metal profiles measure up to 7.5 metres and are

used in the manufacturing of balconies, solar panels, electrical fixtures and lorries.

4/2018 maintworld 49


IFR release


surge in



robot sales

“I would like to see more robots here,” says Mikael Andersson, who is not afraid of losing

his job. Rather, his daily tasks are more varied and interesting following the introduction

of automation technology at FT-Produktion.

up training via free e-learning courses.

Mikael also received training in the use

of the EasyRobotics ProFeeder and the

dual gripper from OnRobot, enabling

him to easily and flexibly install, program,

operate and reconfigure the overall


- It was actually easier to use robots

than I had expected. If you’re standing

there all day, feeding the same machine

with parts, you can feel it in every joint

of your body at the end of the day. Now

my job is less monotonous and much

more interesting. It’s fun to watch a robot

at work! I would like to see more of

them here. This cobot solution is so easy

to reconfigure that even small production

runs are feasible in terms of costs,

says Andersson.

The Swedish machine shop manufactures

650 different aluminium profiles

and fills 7,000 orders annually, with

production runs ranging from five to

150,000 units. Given the wide range of

tasks and volumes, flexible automation

is absolutely essential. A single robot solution

must be capable of handling many

different parts with minimal downtime

when reconfiguring from one production

run to the next.

The new generation of collaborative

robot arms also requires high performance

accessories. For example, the

functionality and user-friendliness of

grippers ultimately determines the

scope and variety of tasks and parts that

can be automated, as well as the ROI

time for automation investments.

- It only takes 10 seconds to change

to a different part on the robot’s display,

says Andersson, who sees the robot as a

useful tool in a time of high demand and

limited labour supply.

- The robots are not taking any jobs.

We can fill more orders and deliver more

detailed parts with higher quality when

we use the robots. They have been easy

to install and adjust, so we’ve been able

to do it all ourselves, with just a little

help over the phone from Edströms.

FT-Produktion’s first cobot cell is

based on the plug & produce principle,

which makes flexible automation easy

and profitable for small and mediumsized

manufacturers. The cobot cell

includes the following components from

the global leaders in modern collaborative

robot technology: A UR5 robot arm

from Universal Robots, a ProFeeder

from EasyRobotics, and a dual gripper

solution with two RG2 grippers from

OnRobot. This fully-integrated robot solution

offers intuitive operation and programming,

with 3D visualisations on the

robot arms touchscreen. The ProFeeder

and RG2 are certified by Universal Robots

and offered through the Universal


2018, published by the International

Federation of Robotics (IFR) shows

that investments in industrial robots

keep increasing. In fact, the global

industrial robot sales doubled from

2013 to 2017 and the outlook for

the next three years (2018-2021)

estimates that the global sales will

increase 14 percent per year on


- As with previous reports from

IFR, the findings this year is in line

with our own experiences at Universal

Robots. We also see a significant interest

and desire to automate processes

and more and more companies – no

matter the size – are realizing the benefits

of robots in their manufacturing

setups, says Esben Østergaard, Cofounder

and CTO at Universal Robots.

In the 2018 report the IFR highlights

many cutting-edge technologies

such as the concept of man-machine

collaboration and easy programming

which will help improve the productivity

of manufacturing and expand the

area of robot applications.

- Robotic automation improves consistency

of quality and consistency

of flow. Collaborative robots – in its

essence man-machine collaboration –

are especially compelling as they work

together with human workers instead

of replacing them. We definitely see

an accelerating demand for consumer

goods that display an element of “the

human touch” along with consistently

high quality, says Østergaard.

The report sees a growing demand

for robotic automation specifically

within the auto industry, electronics,

and the metal industry. Five major

markets; China, Japan, South Korea,

the United States and Germany represented

73 percent of the total sales

volume in 2017.

The results of this year’s IFR report

were announced in October at a press

conference at the World Robot Summit

in Tokyo.

Nina Garlo-Melkas

50 maintworld 4/2018


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