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No more wishful thinking: ConditionServices

What if a machining center promptly notified you that a value was approaching the tolerance limit? What if experts received this notification in real time? What if they were not only able to identify the cause and solve the current problem, but could also prevent this fault from happening again by using continuously recorded data? With ConditionServices, there's no need for wishful thinking. Instead, you have status-oriented, continually optimized maintenance management for increased technical machine availability with predictable costs.

Overview of maintenance strategies
»Reactive«, »proactive« and »condition-oriented« are three strategies used for machine maintenance. Many companies still choose a reactive strategy, only taking action once a fault has already occurred. This will affect machine availability accordingly – the more complex the fault, the longer the period during which machining center will be unable to manufacture.

EfficiencyServices enable improved reactive maintenance with reduced downtime. Using RemoteLine, which provides direct access to the machine data, the experts at CHIRON Group Service can identify and resolve faults, in many instances directly and without making a service call-out. When combined with proactive, cyclic maintenance, this can further reduce unplanned downtime.

However, it will take additional measures to increase machine availability in the long term. Namely, a long-term strategy to reduce downtime towards zero and to consistently maintain the machine in its best condition. This is where ConditionServices come in.

»In conjunction with the individual machine condition, machine history and maintenance and repairs information, ConditionServices ensure an intelligent maintenance process based on the machine condition.«
Johannes Hellstern
Digital Services Product Manager at the CHIRON Group

ConditionServices: A three-step strategy
ConditionServices are not a one-off solution but rather a long-term process towards consistently high technical availability – with the additional benefit of fixed, foreseeable costs.

Step one: Analysis of the machine and service history
To start with, the service managers take a look back and closely inspect the data of all of the components which influence the manufacturing quality. Which faults have there been in the past?

Have certain components – as illustrated in the figure by the tool changer and drivetrain on the Y-axis – been disproportionately affected? The service managers look into the details of any abnormalities, research their causes and recommend how such a fault can be avoided in future. For example, this could involve retrofitting or adapting the maintenance plan to the tool changer with an enhanced wear parts package.

Step two: Cyclic recording and data evaluation

In the next stage, all potential sources (new and existing CHIRON and STAMA machines) are incorporated into a comprehensive maintenance strategy based on ConditionLine, a module from the SmartLine range. The digital system automatically analyzes all of the machine data that is relevant for the machine to operate reliably. 

ConditionLine is directly integrated into new machines. On the other hand, existing CHIRON and STAMA systems can be upgraded with hardware and software via a retrofit. For older machining centers which do not have the technical prerequisites for integration or continuous data recording and evaluation, HealthCheck is the correct instrument to use. HealthCheck adds additional appointments to the annual maintenance schedule so that the CHIRON Group Service can manually inspect the machining centers on-site. The managers use the results to make well-founded recommendations for maintenance work and to exploit optimization potential.

Step three: Maintenance based on the machine condition
ConditionLine constantly monitors and analyzes the condition of the machine and detects irregularities in operation at an early stage. The more machines that are integrated, the less time it will take to create a comprehensive, reliable database. Another factor is time. This is because, with every passing month and year, potential disruptive factors can be predicted with greater accuracy. The maintenance scope and planning can therefore be adjusted to the current requirements in an accordingly dynamic and increasingly precise manner. Technically availability will rise increasingly, with the additional benefit of fixed and foreseeable costs.

Buy or subscribe?
With ConditionServices, customers have a choice of different payment models. The ConditionLine software and necessary hardware can be purchased in the traditional way via a retrofit, or a subscription can be taken out for the contract term. 

In addition to ConditionLine and/or HealthCheck, the following services are included in all price models: Analysis, inspection and maintenance of the machining centers, as well as spare and wear part replacement. 

Improving performance by combining modules
The third element for increased overall equipment effectiveness are ProductivityServices.

In this case, the service managers scrutinize the manufacturing process, including all of the areas involved such as hardware and software, automation and process and set-up times. This indicates any areas of untapped potential and these can be exploited using appropriate measures, particularly by integrating additional SmartLine modules.

Want to find out more about SmartServices?

Johannes Hellstern, Digital Services Product Manager at the CHIRON Group, would be happy to answer any calls or e-mails.

Johannes Hellstern
Phone: +49 7461 940-3728
Johannes.Hellstern@chiron.de