MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
What are the requirements for machinery CE marking plates?
Owen Kennedy of nameplates365.co.uk explains the requirements relating to CE plates affixed to machinery to indicate compliance with the Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC.
Root cause analysis benefits end users and machine designers
A robust root cause analysis (RCA) process is an essential tool for any effective reliability or maintenance improvement program. As Phil Burge, Country Communication Manager at SKF, explains, it can provide useful insights for machine designers too.
The fight against food contamination: metal detectors vs. X-ray
Sarah Ketchin, Managing Director at Fortress Technology, tackles the equipment options in the most widespread food and packaging application scenarios, cuts through the confusion on the pros and pitfalls of metal detectors versus X-ray, and highlights the importance of arming yourself with all of the facts to make an informed decision based upon the most prevalent contaminant risks.
Increased connectivity with digital twins
Until the beginning of the 21st century, the only way to get information about the status of operating industrial equipment was to inspect it. Today, increased computing power and connectivity are making it possible to virtualise this task by creating and maintaining a digital twin of anything from electric motors to PLC systems. The concept doesn’t stop at industrial facilities. It’s predicted that by 2018, we will begin to see the first stages of digital twins for entire cities being developed. Here Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of European Automation explains the concept of digital twins and the impact it will have on industry.
Foodie fads spark robot rethink
TV cooking programmes are driving legions of fans back into the kitchen. Seven of the top 10 most-seen shows of 2015 were episodes of Bake Off, with demands for specific ingredients and products featured, sparking a sales bonanza after each broadcast. Similarly, a slew of new dinner kits are inspiring home cooks to prepare more ambitious meals at a fraction of the effort. This trend is compelling retailers to rethink store layouts, how they group products together for consumer convenience and how swiftly they react to the scramble for the latest ‘must have’ ingredient or kitchen gadget.
The delicate balance of costs versus productivity
European manufacturers are estimated to spend over EUR400 billion every year on maintenance activities. Studies show that about 30 per cent of failed machinery can be repaired at half the cost of buying replacements, which suggests a potential 15 per cent saving. John Mitchell, business development manager at CP Automation, discusses the issues that stop manufacturers cutting costs and improving productivity – the essence of lean manufacturing.
Lockout/tagout: prevent 15-20 per cent of workplace accidents
Lockout/Tagout can save lives during machine maintenance and interventions in production facilities. Some 15–20 per cent of workplace accidents can be avoided with Lockout/Tagout, which is why the procedure should be part of any ambitious go-for-zero programme that bans accidents from the workplace.
Changes in machinery functional safety standard ISO 13849-1:2015
Stewart Robinson, Principal Engineer and Functional Safety Expert at TÜV SÜD Product Service, explains the changes in ISO 13849-1:2015, the new edition of this functional safety standard for machinery.