It's familiar to any automated warehouse system owner (high-bay warehouse, small part warehouse, conveyors, etc.): there's often a "hitch" at the same old places in the PLC/plant system. The usual approach is a daily struggle to cope with the symptoms. As wear and attrition worsens over the years, so does the risk of an increasing frequency of system downtime. Specialised interventions can help to restore the reliability of plant systems – but only if such interventions are performed in a timely and targeted manner.
One of the daily challenges facing a warehouse owner is retaining the value of the automated logistics system currently installed while safeguarding both availability and system performance. Yet the "ravages of time" are felt after only a few years of using the installed system and downtime starts to occur more often:
- spare parts are discontinued or hard to procure (examples include Simatic modules, Baumüller controllers, Interbus-S, Teubner keyboards)
- Legacy WMS/MFC systems lose compatibility with the latest operating systems/databases, etc. (e.g. Windows 7)
- Outdated bus systems
- Mechanical wear and tear
For older systems in particular, technical expertise also starts to be lost. Often, a competent level of service and support can be offered only by a few individuals, and backup teams can only be put together by signing expensive service contracts.
Yet with the timely identification of targeted retrofitting work, the following results can be achieved:
- Improved operating efficiency (OEE) – often by more than 20%
- Reduction of ongoing operating costs to a minimum (spare parts, energy use, etc.)
- Performance and throughput increases of 10% to 30%
- A high level of software stability
- Excellent options for remote maintenance
A free-of-charge Retrofit Check for your plant systems!
- Inventory of PLCs/control cabinets/sensors/actuators
- Estimate of effective retrofitting work and savings
- Analysis of potential for rollout of SAP warehouse/material flow control