Archive | Services


2:59 pm
August 9, 2017
Print Friendly

GE Adds More IIoT Services to their Portfolio

xgeoogoThe devil is always in the details, but a new service model from GE, called Acceleration Plans, offers to help customers grow with IIoT applications, be it with maintenance, training, or the adoption of managed service capabilities.

According to the press release from late July, Acceleration Plans offer three tiers of increasing value depending on customer needs. These tiers provide the necessary tools and guidance to make new software installation and adoption successful and help maximize return on investment.

“Only 15% of software deployments are considered very successful. Organizational readiness, support, training and data quality need to be accounted for if positive business outcomes are going to be generated,” says Chad Naeger, Senior Vice President and Chief Customer Success Officer for GE Digital.

Maintenance Technology’s Take
Manufacturers struggle with mountains of plant data is well documented, along with new platforms and processes is begging for service experts to provide an essential role for most manufacturers. More services is where GE is going — along with others. GE also offers machine health kits called Digital Machine & Equipment health starter kits to help manufacturers start small and evaluate machine monitoring strategies. For more information on these kits, visit Rapid Start Services page.

>> More details about Acceleration Plans can be found here.


2:59 pm
March 8, 2017
Print Friendly

RDI Technologies’ Iris M Lets You See Subtle, Yet Harmful, Machine Motion

Screen Shot 2017-03-08 at 9.05.22 AMRDI Technologies (Knoxville, TN), says “seeing is believing” when it comes to the company’s Iris M powered by Motion Amplification video-processing product and software package. The patented technology measures subtle machinery motion (including deflection, displacement, movement, and vibration) and amplifies that motion to a level that’s visible to the naked eye (see example application video). Every pixel becomes a sensor, creating millions of data points in an instant.

According to RDI, the user simply has to point the camera at an asset, obtain the video data, and push a button to amplify the true motion of the entire field of view. By drawing a box anywhere in the image, he/she can then measure the motion with a time waveform and frequency spectrum.

Editor’s Note: A recently released Stabilization Update software module for the Iris M powered by Motion Amplification package allows users to  stabilize video that contains motion from camera shake due to environments where ground vibration is unavoidable (see video). In addition to automatically stabilizing based on the entire image, this update features an option to draw a Region of Interest (ROI) in the image that the user knows to be stationary. This helps in complicated motion environments.

For more information, CLICK HERE.


4:28 pm
September 16, 2016
Print Friendly

Quick Return-on-Investment for IIoT Pilot Projects

This slide depicts the infrastructure needed for one of the case studies.(Source: Mitsubishi Electric)

This slide depicts the infrastructure needed for one of the case studies.(Source: Mitsubishi Electric)

As I’m putting together the upcoming Industrial Internet of Things column for October, it’s hard to deny the return-on-investment (ROI) numbers being released at industry conferences and user conferences. At a recent ARC Advisory conference in India, three new applications — from Mitsubishi and Schaeffler — demonstrated the robust ROI for three different industry examples: Continuous Process, hybrid and a discrete production line.

Here’s a quick rundown of these projects and below is a link to the presentation at ARC in India:

These applications include a sensing system, a device and entire production line being connected to a cloud-based system. The waste water case study presented details the return on investment (ROI) and overall costs for a new condition monitoring systems for gearboxes on a line of pumps at this Germany utility.

The results are staggering. Four months after installation of the CMS, the company identified a €3,300 savings for gearwheel defects that were detected. Also, the process avoided a gearbox overhaul and loss of service.

In the paper mill CMS application, the Mitsubishi HiTec Paper wanted to add 26 smartcheck vibration sensors to better monitor a cooling system for its four-story coated thermo-sensitive paper system. After installing the vibration sensor at cost of €25,500, the paper manufacturer reported a €10,500 ROI due to the avoidance of three failures, service-loss and machine damage.

>> Download the Mitsubishi Electric & Schaeffler Group Presentation 

1601Iot_logo>> For more IIoT coverage in maintenance and operations, click here! 


2:42 pm
September 13, 2016
Print Friendly

Life-Cycle Costing: Why So Difficult?

0916klausBy Dr. Klaus M. Blache, Univ. of Tennessee, Reliability & Maintainability Center

Life-cycle cost (LCC) represents the total cost of ownership over the complete life of an asset. Calculating LCC, a relatively simple exercise, can lead to better asset-management decisions. This approach has been referred to as cradle-to-grave or inception-to-disposal costing.

Using the stages in the accompanying chart as a guide, vendors/suppliers should be following detailed specifications from purchasing departments to ensure R&M (reliability and maintenance) requirements are met. This graphic is based on the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) 1993 & 1999 (document M-110 and 110.2), Reliability and Maintainability Guideline for Manufacturing Machinery and Equipment. (It’s noteworthy that both trades and engineers helped develop this guideline.)

Today there are many computerized LCC models. The concept is simple. Wouldn’t you be willing to pay 10% to 15% more in the initial purchase of machinery and equipment (M&E) if you could save substantially more over the life of those assets?

Overall, operational and maintenance (O&M) costs make up 50% to 80% of total life-cycle costs. By the time the M&E is constructed, however, 95% or more of that cost has already been determined. So, it’s either pay a little more up front or pay much more throughout an asset’s life. The good news is that incorporating “design for maintainability” principles in M&E purchasing decisions can generate substantial O&M cost savings. That means specifications should reflect design-in considerations such as accessibility, modularity, and easy assembly and disassembly. For example, ask:

  • Has the need for accessibility with special tools been considered?
  • To reach a frequently failing component, would items that haven’t failed need to be removed?
  • Would some long-life parts be disposed of with disposable parts?

The objective of LCC is to select the most cost-effective approach, so that the lowest long-term cost of ownership is achieved. Unfortunately, ongoing pressure to save money drives short-term thinking. This was a challenge 30 years ago, and still is today.


At a recent Univ. of Tennessee Reliability and Maintainability Center (RMC) meeting in Knoxville, attendees from 50 member companies were polled on LCC matters. Questions and responses included:

Do you have an equation/formula that you use to calculate ROI [return on investment] when making Life-Cycle Asset Management decisions?

  • 76% responded “No.”

How well does your life-cycle process work?

  • Not at all or don’t have one (56%)
  • Not too well (29%)
  • Adequate (10%
  • Very good (5%)
  • Excellent (0%)

How much are design and purchasing (specifications) for R&M needed in buying new equipment?

  • Should always be used (66%)
  • Should be used most of the time (30%)
  • Somewhat needed (4%)
  • Don’t need them (0%)

How much are design and purchasing (specifications) for R&M used in buying new equipment?

  • Somewhat use them (64%)
  • Don’t use them (18%)
  • Regularly use them (9%)
  • Always use them (9%)

These responses indicate a continuing purchasing/manufacturing disconnect. As long as purchasing departments focus mainly on reducing initial costs, this won’t change. Purchasing typically reports to the top of the organization alongside manufacturing, so the battle continues.

What’s needed is a machinery & equipment reliability metric tied to a purchasing department’s performance, not just its cost-saving abilities. After all, LCC decision making is a rich opportunity for organizations. That is if they have the discipline to implement long-term success strategies. MT

Based in Knoxville, Klaus M. Blache is director of the Reliability & Maintainability Center at the Univ. of Tennessee, and a research professor in the College of Engineering. Contact him at


9:00 am
August 4, 2016
Print Friendly

IIoT Analytics Platform

1608mtprod04pUniformance Suite is a fully integrated system of process software solutions said to turn plant data into actionable information enabling smart operations. The suite uses data analytics to allow users to capture data, visualize trends, collaborate with other users, predict and prevent equipment failures, and act to make informed business decisions. The software collects and stores all types of data for retrieval and analysis, predicts and detects events based on underlying patterns and correlations, links process metrics with business KPIs for decision making, and enables IIoT, mobility, cloud, big data, and predictive and enterprise analytics. Uniformance Insight allows users to visualize process conditions and investigate events from any web browser.
Honeywell Process Solutions