Auxiliary equipment supplier Conair Group is focused on its new Uptime Guaranteed promise at NPE2018 (W1845 and S14045).
With the initiative, Conair says it will assure customers that its equipment will rarely — if ever — be the cause of an unintentional production stoppage.
Historically, Conair has designed and engineered its equipment for dependability and minimum maintenance requirements, so company officials say the progression to the Uptime Guaranteed promise is a natural next step.
Larry Doyle, Conair president and Uptime Guaranteed project manager, said the supplier promises to take ownership of any problem, fix or replace equipment and work with the customer to make sure that the uptime objectives are met.
The reliability of Conair products and the support of its parts and service specialists have been major priorities, and now the provider is incorporating Industry 4.0 tools such as a new multi-faceted Cloud-based system known as the Conair SmartServices brand.
Ultimately, Conair will have the capability to tell a customer how close to 100 percent uptime existing equipment can perform. Conair SmartServices will track the equipment's process parameters and other factors and then guarantee the identified uptime percentage.
"The idea of actually guaranteeing some level of uptime, began circulating about three years ago," Doyle said. "Since that time with existing staff, we have been studying such things as how we might measure uptime what is a reasonable expectation for uptime and how we could back up our guarantee."
Conair realized that the only way Uptime Guarantee could work would be "if we could find a way to anticipate problems and solve them before they cause unexpected downtime and enlist the help of customers in that effort," Doyle said.
Conair SmartServices, part of the answer, combines equipment monitoring and visualization functions with advanced cloud-based data storage and analytics.
Sam Rajkovich, Conair vice president of sales and marketing, said the first challenge for SmartServices was to take on and manage the inundation of data emanating from dozens or perhaps hundreds of pieces of operational equipment in a plant.
Sometimes, human-machine-interface software applications are not optimized to effectively communicate critical data, and that makes managing them difficult.
Rajkovich said addressing that need is the starting point for Conair SmartServices. The digital data is filtered and channeled into a platform for intelligent plant management.
The web-based SmartServices platform starts with the installation of compact wireless machine adapters in the controls of each piece of auxiliary equipment. As designed, the system can constantly get smarter as it is used, Rajkovich said. Conair is launching SmartServices at NPE2018.
Among its product lines at NPE2018, Conair will introduce a portfolio of granulators and display seven of the 14 different models from small press-side units to large central configurations.
Conair plans to add larger granulators and specialty units to the line in the near future.
Standard features include improved sound insulation, hardened and water-cooled cutting chambers with abrasion-resistant steel on most models and bigger screens permitting increased throughput without additional horsepower.
In addition, Conair will show a new generation of redesigned Carousel Plus-brand desiccant dryers offering a new air-to-air after-cooling option, improved drying performance, advanced controls, high reliability and energy efficiency. Offerings include the X Series portable dryers and the dX Series mobile drying/conveying systems.
Privately owned Conair of Cranberry Township, Pa., also supplies other plastics processing equipment including blenders, feeders and material-conveying systems and temperature-control equipment. Extrusion equipment includes line-control systems, film-and-sheet scrap-reclaim systems and downstream equipment for pipe and profile extrusion.