Reducing downtime by gathering data     

Transferring data to the cloud has its advantages – everyone says so. But what are the exact implications, and what advantages does a cloud-based application bring compared with conventional digital services? Engineering company Gehring has recently started to visualize and analyze the data of its machine tools in MindSphere

"Precision and longevity are the hallmarks of our tooling systems” – according to the company´s Website – and “It´s all about utilizing the potential of Industrie 4.0,” says Wolfram Lohse, CTO at Gehring. The analog and digital world at Gehring joined forces a long time ago. In order to further reduce machine downtime, Gehring has recently begun to manage and analyze data using the cloud-based, open IoT operating system MindSphere.

Transparent machine conditions

Gehring specializes in honing and is one of the vanguards in this field of advanced technology. Honing is a cutting procedure that creates defined functional surfaces on bores. Increased machining time results in wear and tear on honing stones. In order to avoid delays and downtime during production, the material should be replaced before critical threshold values are reached and the tool’s useful life comes to an end. Thanks to the visualization and analysis of the machine data generated via the cloud platform MindSphere, the condition of all integrated machines is made transparent and comparable. Among other things, the application makes a prognosis for the remaining tool life. This results in a diagnosis that better reflects the mechanical strain and maintenance requirements of the machines, which reduces downtime.

Data help reduce costs

“When it comes to digital solutions, we profit greatly from the data generated by the machines deployed in our customers´ environments,” Lohse explains. “Based on the data that’s gathered, we can try to evaluate the reasons for an observed effect, including the influence of upstream processes. The data give us more insight into the influences on overall equipment effectiveness, and therefore contribute to better planning security and cost efficiency.“

2017-04-10

Picture credits: Gehring Technologies GmbH

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