Most production installations require regular maintenance. The most common maintenance methods are:
- time-based – can keep the installation in good condition given the right time-interval but are high cost;
- failure-based – take place only when a problem occurs and are associated with unexpected equipment failure, production loss and downtime.
An alternative and more efficient method is condition-based monitoring, which uses sensors to determine the condition of the equipment. When early symptoms (such as vibrations, frictions and noise) occur, equipment failure can be expected. A notification can be sent to a plant operator who can make sure the equipment is checked, lubricated or revised.
The main advantage of this method is that it detects potential equipment failures at early stages resulting in an opportunity to prevent them early and at most convenient times for the factory. Ultimately, this leads to higher production efficiency.
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