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Sensor Works by Sensorworks - 10h ago

Are you spending too much money collecting the wrong data?

In our last blog we looked at what condition monitoring would look like in a car, showing how the quality and relevancy of information is more important than the amount of data. This week, we want to focus on the sheer cost of data, and how condition monitoring can help you curb these costs without losing out on valuable and potentially business critical insights. By doing so, we hope to show that the ‘over-collection’ of data does have consequences and that you shouldn’t just collect all the data in the world ‘just because you can.’ After all, the cost of too much data is not just a monetary one.

Start with the basics

The quest for data should always start with a relatively simple question: why? Why do we need this data and what makes it imperative to collect? If there isn’t a good reason for collecting certain metrics, you may just be indulging in the unnecessary collection of data. Not only that, but you need to have a contingency plan for the data. For example, you need systems in place that process the raw potential of data into useable information – which requires processing power, but also human input. Always ensure that each segment adds a new and unexplored dimension to your reporting and the way you understand and analyse your machinery. If your collected data doesn’t do this, then you may need to reassess the reasons behind why you are collecting it in the first place.

Too much data = money wasted

And no, this isn’t just a minimalist way to run your business and collect data. Wading through a sea of data often means that you fail to recognise and address the figures that do matter. Some of these may even be urgent and business critical. As a result, you can lose sight of what’s important and spend too much time, attention, and money on the wrong things.

Unnecessary data can cost you thousands of pounds in uploading, maintenance, storage, and collection costs. Server costs and cloud storage, for example, are a few elements that can get expensive very quickly.

And what for? Just so you can let it sit there and do nothing with it? If you’re collecting data on the off chance that you may need it one day, this suggests that you don’t actually know the main reason for collecting it. And that’s never a good thing. You should attribute value to your data based on its intended outcome and, more importantly, the effect this has on future decision making.

Focus on the outcomes

Here at Sensor Works, we are concerned about the symbiotic relationship between you, your data, and the vital conclusions you draw from it. This is why we make intuitive sensors and set up condition monitoring systems that collect the most important data at the most logical intervals. Not only does this save you storage and maintenance costs, but it also removes any unnecessary data, leaving only the most vital figures. On top of that, we believe in the integration of data with powerful software and trending tools, which can allow you to extract valuable information from your machinery. This, in turn, allows you to be part of a highly effective feedback loop which focuses on preventing breakdowns and machinery failures in a time and cost-efficient manner.

By interacting with your data, understanding the sensors and processes that work to collect it, and implementing a structured analytical framework, you can take decisions that make a difference to your machinery and productivity. Furthermore, you’ll feel confident knowing that your decisions are backed up by the right figures. After all, information is what we’re after, and not just endless streams of data.

Get in touch with us for more information regarding our sensors and our condition monitoring systems.

The post The cost of too much data appeared first on Sensor Works.

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For any industries heavily reliant on power or machinery, unexpected failures and machine downtime is just about the worst thing that can happen. All production must be halted while the problem is fixed, causing huge delays, disturbing carefully planned schedules, and potentially causing safety and environmental concerns.

As experts in the field of machine-based monitoring, we can attest to the fact that unexpected machine downtime can only be eradicated by using sophisticated condition monitoring equipment. We’ll take you through the key ways that condition monitoring and complex wireless sensors can help stabilise unruly equipment and prevent catastrophic failures.

Avoiding the unexpected

This all raises one key question: how do you avoid something you can’t predict? Well, in the past, problems would still occur despite planned maintenance that was completed on a scheduled basis, with electrical substation equipment often being replaced at set intervals. Not only was it still difficult to root out operational inefficiencies and prevent machinery from failing, but it didn’t take into account the various, and often unpredictable, real-time events that can accelerate wear and tear. When all these potential factors are considered, it becomes nigh on impossible to prevent machinery inefficiencies or failures.

A proactive approach to maintenance

Instead of adopting a reactive approach to maintenance and putting out fires where they arise, we recommend using the latest technology to predict eventual issues and fix them before they arise. Not only will this proactive approach allow you to have some sort of control over environmental and climate factors, but it will also give your business the peace of mind it needs to keep operating smoothly.

Failures, even when they seem small and insignificant, can lead to widescale power outages, damaging other equipment in the process which can lead to a profoundly negative ripple effect. Not only does this affect production schedules, but it usually leads to increased spending on equipment and raises operational costs and insurance fees.

Condition monitoring provides the solution

Condition monitoring is one of the only ways that you can constantly monitor equipment. That way, you can liaise with any utility or repair companies once problems arise, giving you the time to make adjustments along the way. Furthermore, it provides a seamless integration with data analytics, allowing you to analyse and monitor equipment performance on a more granular level. Sensors, analytics, and data networks all combine to create a complex web of reliable systems that can reduce outages, extend the life of expensive equipment, and prevent costly damages.

The most important benefits of avoiding unexpected machine downtime include:

  • Improvement of risk management
  • Optimising a maintenance schedule
  • Extending the life of the assets
  • Accurate prediction of the end of life of an asset
  • Improved assessments

Take action now

Condition monitoring can make your business and workflow more reliable, by taking out the unnecessary and costly periods of downtime that most large-scale manufacturers or engines are often faced with. Don’t take the risk with your business – contact Sensor-Works today to find out how our intelligent sensors can help your business take the next step.

The post How to avoid unexpected machine downtime appeared first on Sensor Works.

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The Benefits of Intelligent Wireless Sensors

The world is becoming increasingly orientated around wireless technology. This phenomenon is also spreading to the maintenance sector, which has undergone major revisions and is now benefiting from an enormous influx of new condition monitoring technology. In this blog, we’ll examine this trend and highlight some of the most influential benefits that intelligent wireless sensors have on key industries, maintenance scheduling and large-scale machinery.

Much of the world economy revolves around the ability to use smart analytical systems and IoT to assess crucial elements of businesses and provide real-time metrics that can be communicated across various platforms. The beauty is that all these pervasive technologies rely on intelligent sensors, which provide the measurements and the raw data that feed Big Data. Sensor-Works uses sensors that are designed to integrate effortlessly with all the other important technology within your business. Combine this with various Cloud Based Systems and platforms, and you have a system that can upload real-time metrics and data in a powerful and intuitive fashion. Businesses who adopt this methodology have been able to completely transform the way they collect data, but it can also be made to work within existing and more traditional frameworks.

Transforming businesses, one step at a time

A great practical application of this can be seen in the energy sector, which is increasingly relying on these sensors to provide reliable data. Huge multinational corporations like BP and GE have been able to monitor operations in remote areas with increasing precision, using sensors to monitor equipment in remote locations without having to have staff physically present. This can help cut costs, but can also provide greater safety to staff and natural environments, as preventative measures can now be taken to avoid disasters such as oil spills and gas explosions.

Helping to minimise impact

This collected data is invaluable in keeping the environment safe and clean, as preventative measures can help avoid oil spills and gas explosions. Large scale machinery breakdown seems a thing of the past, with businesses now able to get the most out of their systems without compromising the safety and sustainability of their operations.

These innovative new wireless sensors also have the potential to revolutionise the way we manage information, and this can lead to improvements in how the environment, economy and consumer demands are handled. This in turn has the potential to eradicate large-scale environmental catastrophes, which can help conserve natural environments and renders the technology safer and more sustainable.

This is exactly the reason that Sensor-Works has chosen to develop intelligent sensors that can be used for a variety of different applications. Whereas the machinery and the usage might be slightly different, the fundamental principle and ethos remains the same: preventing wastage and optimising performance. No more costly and invasive repair actions or expensive production delays – with wireless sensors, technology becomes more accessible and more reliable.

Contact us for any questions about our intelligent sensors or possible applications.

The post The Benefits of Intelligent Wireless Sensors appeared first on Sensor Works.

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Predictive maintenance has made enormous progress over the last few decades. Nowadays it has been hailed as one of the most innovative solutions to machinery failures and is a tactic employed by multinational corporations and governments alike.

However, initially developments were slow and rudimentary, but it is precisely these first small steps that the pioneers of today have managed to build on. The almost primitive measuring of simple waveforms has branched out into a vast oasis of possibilities, ranging from the ultrasonic to the thermographic.

The Beginning

So, where did it all begin? Well, the origins of condition-based monitoring and predictive maintenance have been widely credited to be the brain-child of CH Waddington, who led a team in charge of organising the maintenance of the Royal Air Force Coastal Command Squadron.

During his initial observations, he came to the surprising conclusion that the rate of failure or repair was, in many cases, highest immediately after a maintenance session or inspection. The irony of the situation was not lost on him, as the planned maintenance schedules, which sought to combat sudden failures, seemed to be backfiring, creating more unplanned failures in the process. This phenomenon was subsequently dubbed the ‘Waddington Effect,’ but more importantly led to the very first development in condition-based monitoring.

Their solution involved adjusting the maintenance process to correspond with the physical condition of the equipment and the frequency of its use. This data was compiled and analysed, forming the basis of adjusted inspection cycles and marking the revolutionary beginnings of predictive maintenance. And the results were stellar! Despite no prior experience in maintenance or equipment performance, Waddington managed to exceed the best average of any other squadron by more than 79%.

Contemporary Uses

As the technology developed further, it quickly diversified into a myriad of diverse applications. Where previously it was mainly used in aeronautical engineering and heavy machinery, today it is used for the simplest of things, like controlling the temperature and humidity in food storage units.

The use of highly accurate and finely calibrated digital instruments and the ability to anticipate machinery-based failures and component breakdowns is nearing almost mythical standards (at least compared to the good old days). In fact, predictive maintenance is now so advanced that Waddington and the other early pioneers would surely have marvelled at the immense possibilities and benefits of contemporary condition-based monitoring systems.

Future Developments

What used to be enormous truckloads of laboratory and measuring equipment has now been condensed down to simple yet powerful software and highly precise sensors. Ultimately, the evolution of this technology has mirrored the changing landscape of various innovative sectors, like the emergency of green energy, which will only increase the need for this highly precise technology.

Contact Sensor-Works if you have any questions about any of our condition-based monitoring systems.

The post A Short History of Predictive Maintenance appeared first on Sensor Works.

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