Head in the cloud: How disruptive technologies are affecting your plant
In this Big Picture Interview, Dan Miklovic explores asset performance management and the cloud.
Dan Miklovic is principal analyst with LNS Research. He is the author of LNS' Best Practices Guide: Asset Performance Management, and his primary focus is research and development in the asset and energy management practices. Dan has more than 40 years of experience in manufacturing IT, R&D, engineering, and sales across several industries, as well as more than 20 years of industry experience at companies such as Emerson Electric, Mallinckrodt Chemical, Weyerhaeuser, and Scott Products, as well as several consulting companies and software provider Aspen Technology.
PS: Are cloud technologies having a disruptive effect on asset management and condition monitoring?
DM: For asset management, rather than having a disruptive influence,…
What impact is the cloud having on asset management and condition-based maintenance?
The ongoing journey toward lubrication perfection
In pursuit of lubrication perfection
Lubrication plays a major role in Turkey’s energy production
Benchmarking to achieve organizational reliability
Make the cultural shift to failure-free operations.
The chemical manufacturing industry is undergoing a paradigm shift with regard to its view toward reliability. Recent trends show an emphasis on creating failure-free cultures where the goal is to detect potential plant and equipment failures before they occur. Making this shift requires the early detection of potential issues, which requires companies to become more proactive and less reactive. This proactive mindset can be cultivated through the use of reliability and maintenance performance-improvement programs that give organizations visibility into their internal structures from the inside out.
Developing a failure-free culture helps achieve what we call “organizational reliability”—an environment that fosters the needed…
Choose the right tool for vibration analysis
Combine vibration monitoring and ultrasound for more cost-effective predictive maintenance
Use vibration monitoring to improve PdM and prevent failures before they occur
Simple steps to accurate alignment
How vibration analysis can detect alignment problems
Thermal growth and alignment
How to use ultrasound to improve lubrication practices
How ultrasound technicians are improving reliability at your plant
Thermography heats up
Use thermography to diagnose electrical problems
IR technology offers a tool with multiple applications
A tale of 2 industrial plants
Regulate water temperature
Welding QC simple with real-time temperature readings
Reduce corrosion costs
Combat corrosive conditions with prevention and early detection
Perform system maintenance to slow degradation of rotating equipment
The truth about PdM: How your peers are really using predictive maintenance
Predictive maintenance survey reveals drivers, obstacles and the future
New technologies help avoid machine faults
Companies look to drones to boost safety
Dow Chemical is among those eyeing unmanned aircraft to help cut accident risk.
Anyone who’s seen the devastating footage from post-earthquake Nepal knows drones have already altered the way films and videos are shot. But the technology may soon transform a much less glamorous industry: safety.
Dow Chemical is among those companies that have requested permission from the FAA to use unmanned aircraft commercially, citing safety among their reasons for doing so.
Read the full story on TheNewOrleansAdvocate.com.
Remote monitoring through turbine retrofit
Work with IT to foster remote monitoring
Maintenance and reliability heats up in China
How wearable and mobile technologies extend the benefits of embedded BI
Real-time machinery evaluation leads to plant profitability
How to avoid paralysis through analysis.
Performance evaluation of rotating machinery in a refinery can provide many benefits to the plant engineering and reliability team. This case study deals with pumps; however, such an exercise can be applied equally to other major and critical pieces of machinery available in an operating plant. Centrifugal compressor monitoring can be done using such an approach to evaluate the operating context of the compressor. Variables such as the operating margin around the anti-surge line, compressor polytropic head and efficiency, and gas horsepower can be readily determined in real time giving valuable information on the condition of a particular asset. This approach also helps in cutting back heavy reliance on the OEM and utilizing on-site,…
Examine and break the cycle of pump repairs
Fluid handling tools you can use
Handle fluid with care
Pumps in peril?
Remote control crane operation: Heavy lifting made easy
Remote control and monitoring innovations are driving greater productivity, efficiency, and safety on crane systems.
Cranes are critical in a number of industries, including aircraft/aerospace, auto manufacturing, chemicals and minerals, pulp and paper, steel production, and utilities, as well as the grain industry, logging, rail yards, and ship loading.
Traditionally, industrial cranes have been operated by human operators sitting in cabs in the cranes. In such instances, the operator's actions are guided by the hand signals of a person outside of the crane. "In the past, cranes were operated by the cab operators," says Brad Robinson, president of Robinson Engineering, which has been offering remote control technologies since 1962. "The guy on the ground was hooking the chains, doing the loading, and having to wave his hands to direct the operator where…
Don't sacrifice safety for productivity
Material handling meets energy efficiency
Big data in the material handling industry: From supply chain to fulfillment
PM and PdM for electric motors
Build the right balance of predictive and preventive tactics to extend long-term operating service life.
We often hear the terms preventive maintenance (PM) and predictive maintenance (PdM) of electric motors, but far less often do we give consideration to the tasks associated with these methods of maintaining motor operation and extending operating service life. This article addresses some of the more common activities associated with PM and PdM, with the focus on three-phase squirrel cage motors.
Preventive maintenance activities
Preventive maintenance primarily consists of face value “snap-shot” assessments of motor health taken at planned and fixed intervals, and then making judgments on machinery condition usually based only on a single set of readings and observations. That is, a test or inspection is performed and evaluated based…
Are adjustable speed drives right for you?
Boost motor efficiency for a better payoff
Common sense management of EISA motor changes
13 ways to optimize your compressed air system
The best compressed air system efficiency occurs when both sides of the system are optimized at the same time by taking a holistic systems approach.
You may have heard that compressed air is one of the most expensive utilities in an industrial plant. It's a fact that compressed air is a poor way to transmit energy to an industrial machine or tool if you want superior efficiency. That being said, it is unlikely that in the name of energy efficiency alone, you'll convert all of your industrial tools and equipment to direct-drive electric. Compressed air will never disappear from industrial plants; it is a very useful utility.
Compressed air system costs vary widely. This is because the efficiency of systems is often ignored, as there often are more important issues in running a system. (Chief among these are keeping the pressure at a constant reliable level and maintaining adequate air…
Calculate the life cycle cost of your compressed air system
What is your compressed air survey ROI?
Compressed air system solutions for deep surface mining
Back to basics: Getting to the bottom of leaks in your compressed air system
Video: Faster, stronger, cheaper - China's robotics project
ABB acquires Gomtec to expand collaborative robotics portfolio
What happens when factory robots are freed from their cages
Design, build, program a 120-pound robot; then do homework
3D printing and cloud tech give small manufacturers a new edge
New services let small companies simply upload designs and have somebody else print items
Two powerful tech trends—3-D printing and cloud computing—are coming together. And that might make it a lot easier for small companies to get into the manufacturing game.
Read the full story on WSJ.com.
Manufacturing startups flock to former Maine air base
3D land surveying and GIS: 3D is not just for printing parts
Is manufacturing really new?
Real optimization in a virtual factory
New twists in turbines: How recent developments are delivering business benefits
Sheila Kennedy says reduced weight, minimal maintenance, and increased efficiency provide cost benefits.
Turbine designers are finding new ways to lower costs, increase efficiency and capacity, minimize maintenance requirements, and reduce the size and weight of the equipment. Recent developments are delivering business benefits, particularly in the renewables space.
Sheila Kennedy is a professional freelance writer specializing in industrial and technical topics. She established Additive Communications in 2003 to serve software, technology, and service providers in industries such as manufacturing and utilities, and became a contributing editor and Technology Toolbox columnist for Plant Services in 2004. Prior to Additive Communications, she had 11 years of experience implementing industrial information systems. Kennedy earned her B.S. at…
Contaminants’ impact on gas turbine operation
Mechanical or electrical trip system testing?
A failure to communicate can be the root cause of expensive machine breakdowns
In this installment of What Works, a customized, cloud-based reliability program helps Eastman Chemical close communications gaps and cut unplanned downtime.
Kingsport, Tenn.-based Eastman Chemical prides itself on having world-class maintenance and reliability teams, with experts in their fields helping the company serve customers in more than 100 countries worldwide and continually earn Eastman spots on "partner of the year" and "best places to work" lists. But frustratingly, Eastman found that communications breakdowns between these teams too often were at the root of expensive machine breakdowns.
"We knew that most of the problems that we had were communications issues," says Steve Powers, Eastman's reliability team lead. When it comes to optimizing maintenance planning, "It's hard to communicate everything that you need to do," he adds.
And from a maintenance and control perspective,…
Plant Services CMMS/EAM Software Review
Read David Berger's column, Asset Manager
Subscribe to the Asset Management E-News
Sign up for the 2015 asset managment webcast
Better analytics produces big savings for Dow Chemical
Big data in the material handling industry: The NIST project
Improve plant productivity with communication, data gathering, and analysis
Smart manufacturing: A path to profitable growth
Small and medium-size companies in the $3 trillion U.S. manufacturing sector largely are missing out on smart manufacturing's benefits, Brian Kennell writes.
A bullet train is leaving the station, and it promises to transform and propel U.S. manufacturers who climb on board--in a wave of information technology known as smart manufacturing.
The big names are not just aboard, they're driving the train: IBM announced in March it will spend $3 billion in the next four years to create an "Internet of Things" unit and develop software to help customers do the same.
Read the full blog post on HuffingtonPost.com.
Remote condition monitoring technologies enable effective, efficient predictive maintenance
How the Internet of Things might change your plant
6 mistakes to avoid with EAM software
Bring-your-own-device policies put plant data in the palm of your hand
Tesla buys Michigan auto supplier
The acquisition of Grand Rapids-based Riviera Tool marks Tesla's first presence in Michigan.
Tesla Motors is acquiring a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based auto supplier, giving the Silicon Valley technology company a manufacturing presence in Michigan.
Tesla reached a deal to acquire Riviera Tool, marking the first acquisition for the burgeoning electric-vehicle and battery manufacturer, the Free Press has learned from a person familiar with the matter.
Read the full story on freep.com.
Top 5 ways to prevent arc flash
How to determine the best electrical safety practices for your plant
Do capacitor systems really save energy?
Electrical safety experts answer your questions
Bill aims to boost "green" jobs in manufacturing
Proposed legislation would provide grants to states for energy-efficient retrofits.
Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., announced Wednesday the introduction of the Job Creation through Energy Efficient Manufacturing Act in both the U.S. Senate and House.
The lawmakers said their bill would create jobs and save money for manufacturers by putting people to work retrofitting manufacturing facilities to be more energy-efficient.
Read the full story on KTVZ.com.
The puzzle of future oil pricing
Energy management motivation: Fighting mixed signals, misaligned goals and unpredictable resources
Track energy costs like you would operating costs
Establishing an energy management dashboard the right way
Overcome potential problems with power quality
Don’t let harmonic distortion, voltage transients, or grounding issues affect your production.
Power is a critical resource to an industrial plant, so power problems require power solutions. Many industrial facilities have their own on-site power-generation capabilities to reduce energy costs and to compensate for the potential of short-term utility outages. Power quality can have different kinds of impact on operations and production. There are just as many causes of poor power quality as there are options to solve them, and many of them are extremely affordable.
"Voltage imbalance is a huge issue with motors," says Dan Chamberlain, electrical PDG lead CCMNA for Cargill in Dayton, Ohio. "Allied Reliability Group has been working with all of Cargill's corn milling facilities for a number of years and always…
Harmonics and power quality: an overview
Turbine retrofit ups efficiency 13%
Select the correct blower technology for industrial wastewater treatment applications
This article discusses the advantages and limitations of each technology in various wastewater treatment applications.
Blower selection is an important decision when designing a new wastewater treatment plant or upgrading existing facilities. The proper selection of blower equipment for the application, as well as purchasing from a reputable supplier, can save thousands of dollars in energy, repairs and maintenance costs. This article provides an overview of the blower technologies available for wastewater treatment, and discusses the advantages and limitations of each technology in various wastewater treatment applications.
Take a look at a municipal wastewater treatment plant near a textile factory in Asia (Figure 1). Is there any question as to why we treat industrial wastewater? The use of blowers for aeration and mixing accounts for 40 to 75 percent…
Requirements for reciprocating compressors in refrigeration systems
Drive down your energy costs with heat of compression recovery
Compressed air systems' waste heat improves plant economics
Heat recovery — Great in theory, tough in practice
Cloud-based climate controls help keep your plant the perfect temperature
Sheila Kennedy says smart systems enable secure remote access, optimize energy consumption across facilities.
Cloud-based climate controls help keep your plant the perfect temperature
It can be difficult to optimize the climate of plant offices, maintenance shops, stockrooms and warehouses, particularly for multi-site or global organizations. New cloud-based systems facilitate transparency and control, reduce energy costs and consumption, and address security concerns.
The new Smart Cloud Climate Control System, developed collaboratively by SoftServe UGE and Panasonic Europe’s heating and cooling solution division, enables simultaneous control of the climate within multiple facilities from a single device. It allows centralized monitoring and one-click temperature optimization in all sites, and it permits the ability react quickly…
Ohio injection molding plant gets cooler and brighter
How to achieve better HVAC and dust collection
Reduced HVAC energy waste
Heat recovery and energy efficiency go hand in hand
Why you're not as lean as you think
Lean is not a static state; it’s a dynamic state of continuous improvement.
A European manufacturing company eager for affirmation of the success of its lean initiative invited in for a visit a renowned Toyota manager from Japan who had helped develop the Toyota Production System.
After a long day of going through every detail of the plant, everyone gathered in a conference room. The company’s chairman said, “Please, now tell us if you consider us to be world-class lean.” The answer was short and to the point: “It’s impossible for me to say,” the Toyota manager offered. “I wasn’t here yesterday.”
Lean is not a static state; it’s a dynamic state of continuous improvement. Continuous improvement is about engaging all employees in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of your processes every…
Improving your global production and logistics footprint
How to take your plant one step closer to lean
Implementing lean operating systems
Lean manufacturing leads to production gains
Perspective: It's time for manufacturers to start taking responsibility for suppliers
The faster a company can react to a supply-chain issue, the less harm comes to its customers, brand and bottom line. So why are businesses with massive supply chains using software based on 1990s paradigms?
Imagine: A single global supply-chain network that integrates different ERP systems, trading partners, and most importantly, data that moves between them. A car company wouldn’t have to rely on its tier-one suppliers to tell it — by a forwarded email — what its tier-two suppliers are doing. Instead, they’d get an update directly through their supply-chain platform, just like a Facebook notification.
Read the full post from Greg Johnsen, co-founder and CMO of GT Nexus, on recode.net.
Global manufacturing PMI data: U.S. is still the best
Integrate inventory management with your processes
How to use preventive maintenance to improve inventory management
What does vendor managed inventory mean for your plant?
Heard at IFSWoCo15: Four top takeaways
Panelists at IFS' World Conference 2015 share their predictions about the future of manufacturing.
Software vendor IFS, whose largest industry served is manufacturing, hosted its World Conference 2015 in Boston this week for customers, business partners and industry analysts. Disruptive technologies – from drones to driverless cars – and how they will affect businesses and the global workforce were a hot topic of conversation throughout the conference. We're incorporating automation into more and more tasks in our professional and personal lives, speakers and panelists noted – so what does the short-term and mid-range future likely hold for manufacturers?
Here, four key comments shared by some of the conference's prognosticators this week:
1. "I think we'll see the ubiquity of sensors." - Joshua Bellin, research fellow at…
Using gap analysis to monitor and maintain your Work Management Process
Management of change
What you need to know before implementing change management
Eight common misperceptions of management of change
Pass-along knowledge for the next generation of engineers and operators
In this Big Picture Interview, Robert Perez explores the role of the machinery reliability engineer.
Robert X. Perez is a machinery reliability engineer with more than 30 years of experience in the petrochemical industry. He earned a BSME degree from Texas A&M University, College Station, and an MSME degree from the University of Texas at Austin, and he’s a licensed professional engineer in the state of Texas. He has written extensively about machinery reliability and served on the Turbomachinery Symposium Advisory Committee for 10 years.
PS: What does a machinery reliability engineer do?
RP: A machinery reliability engineer, or MRE, is a subject matter expert in the field of process machinery, such as centrifugal compressors, centrifugal pumps, reciprocating compressors, reciprocating pumps, and steam turbines. As an MRE my job…
Mentoring the next generation of maintenance and reliability leaders
Fuel sealing systems testing
Evolving certification requirements impact oilfield service companies’ choice in material suppliers.
Oilfield service companies (OFS), the backbone of the oil and gas industry, are closely following the movements of such customers as Halliburton, Schlumberger, Cameron International, FMC Technologies, and Baker Hughes. These customers are also leveraging important trends for their customers simply because they have to in order to maintain their competitive edge.
One key trend that most oil and gas companies seem to be doing a pretty good job at is limiting their exposure to any one region by diversifying into multiple international markets. Experts point to how they have been counting on overseas business due to the better market conditions than in North America in the last few years. For instance, Schlumberger recently set up a joint…
Conveyor maintenance: Moving from preventive to predictive models
Seven tips for picking an outside contractor
Offshoring and outsourcing
The benefits of maintenance outsourcing
Cybersecurity: The ever-changing threat
Require safety compliance in your supply chain
How to measure the safety of your plant
Safety is everyone's job
TOP 5 WAYS TO PREVENT ARC FLASH
Safety is always a priority for plant managers, with the threat of arc flash weighing heavily on their minds. Here are the top 5 article you need to read to help prevent arc flash and ensure the electrical safety of your plant.
New OSHA rules on electric power generation, transmission, and distribution
What’s revised, why, and how much it will cost.
Are new OSHA rules on electrical safety regular or supersize?
2014 changes to the 1910.269 and 1926.960 rules.
How the electrical safety trifecta can reduce risk and increase reliability
Safe installations, safe work practices, and adequate electrical equipment maintenance come together.
Are new OSHA rules on electrical safety regular or supersize?
The history of electrical safety
How to lower your risk of arc flash
Got questions about arc flash? We've got answers.
Arc flash hazard experts answer your questions
Mitigate arc-flash risk
Objective and measurable techniques to determine best safety practices on electrical systems.
Frequently asked questions
I hire qualified electricians, why do I need to monitor their every move?
You likely were diligent to hire technically competent electrical workers. Qualification ensures they can recognize and avoid injury from electrical hazards. It is the employer’s responsibility to train workers on specific facility hazards, ensure understanding, and monitor compliance after training has been given. These three steps must be effective, timely, and documented to keep workers safe and for you to comply with regulations and standards.
You won’t be monitoring their every move all the time. NFPA 70E establishes “periodic monitoring” as at least once a year. That may not be enough to satisfactorily know they will work…
Electrical workplace safety training is the best insurance money can buy
How changes to the National Electrical Code will affect your plant
Change management to change the electrical safety culture in your plant
Ensure that your critical ICS data is protected
Cybersecurity is an ongoing journey that manufacturers need not take alone.
The threats to industrial control systems are real and alarming. Building an effective defense is something few companies can or should undertake singlehandedly.
In a report released in March, the US DHS ICS-CERT (Industrial Control System Computer Emergency Response Team) cited 245 documented cyber attacks on industrial control systems in the period between Oct. 1, 2013, and Sept. 30, 2014. Keep in mind that those were attacks that were recognized and reported. One can assume that there were far more that were not detected and others where the victims did not feel inclined to make the incident public.
While this statistic can be analyzed and interpreted many ways, one thing is clear: Industrial networks and control systems are under…
3D scanning: Measurement, made better and faster
The evolving automation architecture: The time to act is now
Are smart devices giving us too much information?
Industrial Internet of Things by any other name
Is IIoT really a new concept?
When Brian Sides heard about the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), it really didn’t connect with him. That might seem strange for the director of technology at Okuma America, who also was one of the original architects of THINC-OSPcontrol, an open-architecture CNC.
IIoT didn’t resonate with Sides because he’d been familiar with machine-to-machine data monitoring already, but by a different name. “I started to realize the machining manufacturing environment was already doing this without the name,” explained Sides, who spoke in Orlando, Florida, at ARC Forum in February. “This is not two or three years down the road. It’s been five years in the making.”
To learn more about the Industrial Internet of Things, read “Is…
Is information software in your toolbox?
Mobile-device tools bring connectivity and collaboration
Control systems just got more maintenance-friendly
Changing control architecture
Industrial plant networks go wireless
Unlock energy efficiency potential with wireless automation systems
New predictive maintenance monitoring and diagnostics tools take charge
Electrical enclosure vents
Ventilation openings help maintain component temperatures and prevent catastrophic failures.
Ventilation openings help to maintain component temperatures inside the enclosure within certain design limits.
If these openings are blocked, either inadvertently or intentionally, overheating of the equipment may result.
A careful review of the standards and terminology is an excellent way to truly understand the various construction features used in electrical equipment enclosures and what exposure they create.
Electrical distribution equipment in all voltage classes often has ventilation openings to permit the circulation of air by convection within the enclosure. These ventilation openings help to maintain component temperatures inside the enclosure within certain design limits. If these openings are blocked, either…
Beware shiny objects: Why consumerism's creep should give manufacturers pause
In this Big Picture Interview, Clay Flannigan says consumer technologies are making their way rapidly into industrial manufacturing, and vice-versa.
Consumer technologies are making their way rapidly into industrial manufacturing, and vice-versa. But in this quickly evolving technology environment, manufacturers must maintain focus on solutions for the long term, says Southwest Research Institute's automation engineering manager.
Clay Flannigan is the manager for robotics and automation engineering at Southwest Research Institute, a not-for-profit research and development organization in San Antonio, Texas.
PS: For someone unfamiliar with Southwest Research Institute, how would you describe the work that you do?
CF: That’s always a difficult thing to answer because we are very diverse, but we’re characterized as an applied research and development institute. We’re nonprofit, and…
Will you be working for a robot in the future?
How much do you know about robots?
Running robots mean flowing profits
Video: The father of the PLC explains its birth
SCADA gets better, faster, stronger
Getting the right information from your devices
Thomas Wilk investigates how manufacturers are using intelligence effectively on the plant floor.
Since the birth of the smart transmitter in the early 1980s, manufacturers have chased a vision of using intelligent technologies to drive automated process and resource efficiencies on the plant floor.
The latest manifestation of this vision is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), also known as Industry 4.0. Both terms are often used as shorthand to describe the ways that connected machines can monitor physical processes and conditions, and then make decentralized decisions on how to optimize those processes. The potential exists for billions of linked smart devices to collaborate and communicate as part of the IIoT, and to enable customized solutions that help individual plants operate more safely, reliably, and efficiently.
Building for the future: Tooling, training and service under one roof
Enterprise asset management and field service management market expected to grow
Demand for smart meter products and services to increase
Setting the standard for IT best practices
Southwestern Illinois College Precision Machining Technology Program Renews National Accreditation from NIMS
This is the second time that SWIC has established itself as a NIMS-accredited training source
Keeping up with today’s standards, Southwestern Illinois College (SWIC) has renewed the NIMS Accreditation of their Precision Machining Technology Program as of May 6, 2015. This is the second time the college program has established itself as a NIMS-Accredited training source, as this national benchmark was first achieved in 2009. SWIC is celebrated for its continued commitment to meeting local employment needs, while maintaining national industry standards for machinist skills training.
Following a rigorous On Site Evaluation in early April at the college’s Granite City facility, NIMS Evaluator Terry Babb (President, Apextool & Mfg., Inc.) was very impressed with the Precision Machining Technology Program, noting that the…
Workforce development: Training veterans to fill the skills shortage
Are you making the right assumptions about the people you work with?
Raymond receives Diamond Award for course manager training program
Training operators and maintenance staff with 3D visualization
Do you know what young engineers are looking for?
Graduating engineers want more than just a good paycheck from prospective employers.
If you want to attract young talent, it's great—but not enough—to offer even the most fantastic set of technical resources, challenges and rewards. You also have to be able to prove that your process industry plant is a great place to work, and a responsible steward of the planet and the environment. If you can do that, you can attract talent pretty much no matter where you are—or what you make.
To learn more about attracting the right engineer, read “Attracting Good Young Engineering Talent Takes More than a Good Pay Package” from Control.
Is your plant suffering from poor engineering quality? You're not alone.
Implementing lubrication management training
5 key factors of operator training simulators
Students at a suburban Chicago high school are using leading-edge manufacturing technologies in their quest for robotics competition victory—and prospective employers are taking note.
For those who would shake their head about the future of the U.S. manufacturing workforce, an invitation: Next time you're in Chicago, swing out about 30 miles west of the city and drop in on a meeting of the Naperville North High School robotics club.
With a membership of 75 to 80 students, the club draws teens interested in engineering, fabrication, programming—even marketing (the club has its own media relations team). "We are almost a full corporation," says club co-sponsor Mark Rowzee, who worked in engineering for 10 years before becoming a physics teacher at his alma mater.
Consider this: The club, known as Huskie Robotics (@team3061), this year developed its own electric circuit board that it will market to other robotics clubs.
Girl power in the plant
Guess who has a STEM degree
Generation Y in the workplace
Minnesota pilot project offers free ride to technical college
Starting next year, Minnesota will offer a free ride to an estimated 1,600 students in high-demand technical college programs as part of a two-year pilot project.
It started out as an ambitious proposal: Make community college free.
Instead, Minnesota lawmakers settled on something markedly less expensive. Starting next year, the state will offer a free ride to an estimated 1,600 students in high-demand technical college programs as part of a two-year pilot project.
Read the full story on StarTribune.com.
IFS World Conference 2015: Disrupt or be disrupted
Arkansas governor: Manufacturing a 'national security' issue
Jobs rebound in U.S. plastics manufacturing
Training and Career Center
Cultivate diversity to get original ideas from your team
White House aims to get more Americans plugged into tech jobs with new 'Tech Hire' initiative
Do you know who your prospective leaders are?
Maintenance Deathmatch: Predictive Service's Aerial Point software vs. Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter
Watch as two industrial products fight to the death. Which one will win the title of product of the week?
Welcome ladies and gentlemen to Maintenance Deathmatch. This week’s matchup features two industrial heavyweights. In this corner, pinpointing roof problems, Predictive Service's Aerial Point software. And in this corner, accepting inputs from up to eight sensors, Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter. Let’s have a good clean fight and remember, the product with the most votes by next week will be declared the winner.
Congratulations to Endress+Hauser, our new champion!
Predictive Service's Aerial Point software
Endress+Hauser's Liquiline transmitter
Where in the World Is Plant Services?: Ron Stallworth in Phoenix, Arizona
Manage contracted maintenance work as if it's your own
Proactive valve system maintenance
CMMS and EAM rise to the cloud
As a leading global supplier of Asset Management solutions we have been helping companies to cut their operational costs and increase their productivity for over 20 years. Our offering has grown to match the differing requirements of stakeholders in the market and to provide each with prime opportunities to increase their profitability.
IFS Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) improves the company's operational and maintenance procedures, both immediately and in the long term. Based on industry standards, the functionality for collecting data from the process and control systems allows the proportion of condition-based maintenance to be maximized, and the risk of breakdowns and disruptions, to be minimized. Because IFS' solution includes both Plant design and OEE components there is the opportunity to track assets throughout their entire life and to run comparative operational analysis which can reveal where improvements in corporate performance can be made.
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More than ever, CMMS/EAM vendors need you, their clients, to succeed. Many have identified room for improvement and are focusing their efforts on four key areas: industry specialization, implementation, integration and functionality. The changes they wrought have prompted us to revise and expand the Plant Services CMMS/EAM Software Review, our detailed hands-on comparison of current offerings.
Go to the Review
Enterprise asset management (EAM) software is a powerful tool for those responsible for maximizing the value of industrial assets as well as those who perform maintenance work on those assets. But often, EAM software falls short of delivering all of the benefits it could. Why is this? In this Special Report we take a look at what it take a look at how to get the most out of Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) Software, successful enterprise asset management on an international scale and several implementations of real-world operational efficiency strategies.
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Wasted time is the enemy of wrench time. When maintenance technicians spend excessive amounts of time gathering tools and parts, arranging specialized equipment, searching for information or traveling to job sites, their value-added work time is constrained. Learn about the right strategies and tools available to streamline and improve your maintenance operations in this new Plant Services Special Report.
Even though asset management technology has made enormous leaps in recent years, in some ways it may have been easier to manage major assets 30 years ago than it is today. This Plant Services Special Report delves in to some of the latest technologies and practices for managing your plant assets. Download your copy now.
This Plant Services Special Report takes a look at CMMS and outsourced maintenance, CMMS software advancements, and Asset Care programs. Download this Special Report now.
This Plant Services Special Report takes a look at the impact communications strategies and reporting & analysis tools and strategies has had on productivity in today's plant. It also reviews how asset intensive industries can improve their overall equipment efficiency with asset management and maintenance, repair and overhaul tools. Download this Special Report now.
This Plant Services Special Report takes a look at the strategies necessary for successful implementation of CMMS and asset management solutions in today's plants. This Special Report first identifies seven trends to address with a CMMS solution, how CMMS that uses knowledge management can be a competitive advantage, it also discusses the benefits of enterprise CMMS deployments and how to master asset management with projects.
As a cornerstone of the maintenance discipline, reliability centered maintenance (RCM) can achieve benefits in a vast number of areas, depending on where and how it is applied. This Special Report takes a look at the entire range of potential uses of RCM and the ensuing economic and non-cash benefits that can be achieved. In this Special Report we also take a look at what is needed in today's plant to achieve success with lean maintenance methodologies. Download your copy now.
Achieving maximum productivity in your plant is key to maximizing profitability at your plant. Today, this is more important than ever. But how do you know if you're doing everything you can to obtain maximum productivity levels? Download this PlantServices Special Report for a step-by-step guide achieving optimal performance at your plant.
Martin Gunnarsson, director of research & strategy, IFS, presents what is planned for improving support for outsourced service and maintenance operation, enhanced resource scheduling, and improved work order reporting capabilities, during the April 2011 IFS North American Customer Summit in Itasca, Illinois.
Matt Watters, P.E., business analyst, IFS, presents how to use IFS Product Data Management (PDM) for supporting engineering design, configuration control, advanced revision management, and more integrated with manufacturing, during the April 2011 IFS North American Customer Summit in Itasca, Illinois.
Tommy Massey, maintenance manager, Nucor Bar Mill Group, presents how Nucor Steel uses IFS for a complete maintenance solution, including recording information about buildings or equipment, fault reports, work orders, preventive maintenance, equipment monitoring, and resource scheduling, during the April 2011 IFS North American Customer Summit in Itasca, Illinois.
Nobody implements enterprise asset management (EAM) software without an idea of what return they expect on the investment. But too often either due to selection
of inadequate software, subpar implementation or poorly articulated goals, EAM
software projects to not deliver a measurable return.
In this whitepaper, we will examine a few of the specific ways that EAM software
can deliver that sought-after return, so you can plan your selection and implementation around these deliverables. These five EAM ROI tips should help you take advantage of the cost savings and revenue enhancement features EAM has to offer while avoiding the pitfalls associated with an overly complex or problematic implementation.
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There has always been a significant financial reward for high levels of equipment
reliability in the oil and gas industry. ISO 14224 constitutes a "reliability language" that can be used to improve communication between parties involved in rig or facility operations and maintenance. In this white paper, you will learn how enterprise asset management (EAM) software that is prepackaged to support ISO 14224 can speed up compliance with the standard and ensure successful generation of valuable key performance indicators (KPIs) which comply with the standard that in the long run will be used to enhance equipment reliability.
Enterprise asset management (EAM) software is a powerful tool for those responsible for maximizing the value of industrial assets as well as those who perform maintenance work on those assets. But often, EAM software falls short of delivering all of the benefits it could. Why is this? In this whitepaper, we will examine the reasons companies that implement EAM software may not derive the full benefit it could deliver. We will also offer advice to circumvent some of these stumbling blocks and try to realize the promise of EAM.
This whitepaper offers tips on selecting ERP software for the mining industry. Most ERP products came from repetitive manufacturing and lack the powerful asset management and project management functionality mining companies require. Learn how you can you select ERP that can handle the entire mining project and asset lifecycle.
In selecting (EAM) software, usability ought to be a major criteria. Lacking usability, technician time is wasted during data entry and executives cannot get data to make good decisions. IFS EAM expert Mike Auer offers tips to evaluate EAM products for usability and argues for taking usability seriously during selection.
This whitepaper describes the basic considerations in evaluating and selecting Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) software, with a special emphasis on how EAM must help maintenance interact with other parts of the company in order to achieve reliability-centered maintenance. Also addressed are the basic steps to prepare for EAM implementation.
Design, Operate, Maintain (DOM) – key concepts in asset management and in industrial maintenance, repair and operation. Industrial facility designers and those who operate and maintain those facilities need to work together closely to improve plant efficiency and business profitability over time.
In this whitepaper, we will discuss how project-based software solutions are essential for asset-intensive industries, and explore the specific ways that project, maintenance and financial functionality must be integrated in an enterprise software tool for information management. This white paper also address how this information can be leveraged in the company on a macro level for strategic decision-making as well as on a micro level to facilitate technical activities in the maintenance department.
Any organization involved with large, complex assets needs the right technology to manage the design, construction and commissioning of these assets, and these systems need to carry over into the operations and maintenance (O&M) stages of the asset lifecycle. While enterprise asset management (EAM) involves managing the asset itself, AIM deals with the management of the information about the asset. This white paper, addresses not only the importance of AIM to asset management, but defines some key concepts and reviews the different ways the right enterprise software system can facilitate AIM.
If your organization depends on the reliability of its plant and equipment, IFS' enterprise asset management (EAM) solution can help you improve the bottom line. By providing accurate, real-time information about your assets, the IFS solution helps you avoid equipment downtime, extend asset life, reduce service and repair costs, and maximize return on assets.
Managing assets for maximum utilization and efficiency, while minimizing risk, is a complex business. Many factors impact both operation efficiency and risk. Balancing these sometimes competing demands can be done, if you first understand the factors that drive risk and complexity, and if you have the tools and visibility to manage risk and complexity.
ERP for vertical industries is lacking according to this study from IFS North America and analyst Cindy Jutras. Jutras reviews functional gaps revealed in the study and discusses how these gaps create enterprise risk. The single largest gap is caused by a lack of enterprise asset management (EAM) in ERP.
Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) is one key deliverable from implementing Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) software. But IFS EAM expert Jerry Browning explains that RCM doesn't come right out of the box, and a company needs to select EAM that will meet its changing needs on its journey towards RCM.
These seven tips for EAM Selection and Implementation from six IFS experts will be invaluable for companies in asset-intensive industries like utilities, oil and gas, process manufacturing and others. Learn how to use EAM to comply with PAS 55, enact lean maintenance improvements, support aftermarket service and more!
With pressure to adopt lean business practices intensifying, maintenance directors and senior managers of asset-intensive industries are relying on enterprise technology like Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) to eliminate non-value-added work and drive lean maintenance improvements. IFS EAM expert Mike Auer discusses the fine points of implementing EAM for lean maintenance.
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In this webcast you'll learn about the critical factors for successful OEE implementation, and the impact OEE has on revenue. You will also learn about IFS's MaxOEE module and how it can be integrated with EAM systems to add operator and corporate dashboards in to the OEE equation.
Learn how to use Design Operate Maintain, or DOM, to eliminate communication problems between your maintenance and operations departments and designers working on your plant. Get new facilities online quicker and help engineers incorporate your wisdom and experience in their work with help from Christian Klingspor, IFS Senior Advisor for Lifecycle Management!
Easily implemented, reconfigured and adaptable to changing technology, IFS Applications enables agile enterprises to do business around the globe.
IFS provides a broad range of enterprise, manufacturing, service management and asset management solutions. An integral part of IFS Applications, IFS' solutions seamlessly work together, enabling companies to employ lean enterprise concepts, control costs, manage projects, increase efficiencies in their supply chain, and measure their performance.
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