The complex production lines and manufacturing processes of today’s manufacturers are best understood through a rigorous, analytical framework. It is no surprise that digital modeling and simulations are becoming essential pieces of the manufacturing IT toolbox. Industrial simulation software provides insight into potential problems and presents opportunities for improvement in plant and production line layout, process flow, and other aspects of a manufacturer’s operations.
Hyla Soft’s expertise with Tecnomatix, the manufacturing simulation suite by Siemens, brings the power of advanced computational methods to our clients.
Hyla Soft is an experienced systems integrator of OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness) equipment monitoring solutions. Configuring OEE is often an intricate process since it requires matching signals exposed by each equipment to a logical value, and then combining those values to create different equipment states. For example, a particular machine may be in a ‘Running’ state only if signals 1 and 3 are ‘ON,’ while signal 2 is ‘OFF.’
With very large numbers of signals, defining equipment states is a common challenge in the systems integration process.
While implementing OEE on six production lines of a major South American beverage bottler, Hyla Soft consultants used Tecnomatix Plant Simulation to speed the state definition process and stress-test their OEE configuration under all possible manufacturing scenarios.
During initial on-site analysis, Hyla Soft consultants worked with the customer’s plant personnel to gather information about the production line, the processes, and the equipment being monitored.
In the pre-deployment phase, the Hyla Soft team modeled the production lines and the bottles in the different stages of their processing and packaging using Tecnomatix Plant Simulation.
The simulation contained all the equipment signals discovered during the on-site analysis, plus counters for material flow and throughput. Equipment failures and material sensors built into the simulation drove the values of these signals. The Tecnomatix simulation sent data to a server via OPC, the industry standard protocol for industrial device communication.
The OEE configuration under development was set to communicate with the same data server, receiving the equipment signals being simulated by Tecnomatix. The Hyla Soft team was then able to test their configuration of the OEE software even without physical access to the equipment being monitored. By changing parameters of the simulation such as equipment failure rates, the team could ‘stress-test their configuration’ – checking the system for stability under all conditions.
On-site configuration of the OEE system is often a cumbersome process requiring weeks of trial and error. Hyla Soft’s plant and line simulation expertise gave the team the ability to test and verify their configuration, stress-test the system under all scenarios, and troubleshoot problems in a controlled environment. This reduced the team’s configuration time considerably. By performing this configuration simulation and testing off-site, Hyla Soft also cut down on the need for onsite testing.
Hyla Soft’s simulation expertise helps us design solutions to address manufacturing problems and provide insight for performance improvement. Our technology-enabled approach speeds the implementation of cutting-edge plant floor systems.
For more information, please contact Hyla Soft on our production and process simulation capabilities.