SKF publishes handbook on remote industrial maintenance19 July 2021

SKF has published a handbook to help organisations through the process of introducing remote industrial maintenance.

Due to the global pandemic, many executives now consider remote industrial maintenance to be strategically important – rather than simply an element of operational planning. The handbook draws on SKF’s expertise in providing ‘Rotation as a Service’ and includes benchmark data from research conducted at more than 1,400 organisations globally.

As well as a cross-industry guide, there are specific versions for the pulp & paper, steel and chemical sectors.

Each guide explains the elements of remote industrial maintenance, identifies ways in which it can be introduced, assesses risks and estimates financial benefits. These subjects are dealt with in separate chapters.

The first chapter explains the elements of remote industrial maintenance and explores its strategic importance. One aspect of this is how machine learning can be used to analyse the vast amounts of data now generated by machine sensors. These sensors help to detect machine degradation at a very early stage. Other elements of remote industrial maintenance include automated or machine-assisted processes for scheduling, spare parts management, repair and inspection.

Chapter 2 goes on to identify some common strategic objectives that should be considered as a starting point for prioritising remote industrial maintenance. One element of this will be a major data audit because an industrial plant’s data infrastructure is critical to the success of remote industrial maintenance.

Chapter 3 deals with risk identification and assessment. It stresses that, while remote industrial maintenance may be ‘strategically compelling’, this is not a ‘pretext to bypass risk assessment’.

Finally, the guide helps to estimate financial benefits. Moving forward with one or more components of remote industrial maintenance must be based on a specific business consideration. Chapter 4 provides guidance on estimating the benefit of reduced unplanned downtime.

Operations Engineer

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