CNC Production Monitoring System

Problem faced

When production has to run 24/7 to make profit, it is hard to control machinery and maintain continuous production – keeping highly skilled workers or managers on night shifts is an expensive business.

The managers of a hi tech manufacturing company using a range of CNC machinery wanted to have access to the production status anywhere and anytime. They needed a communication system that would inform them if production stopped for too long and no action was taken.

The main aim was to create an easy-to-use and practical production monitoring system, displaying the machinery status and storing the history for the performance assessment, as well as the alarm function for unplanned shutdown during the night shift. Also required was remote access to the status display (via mobile access).

The system would enable small and medium size companies to take advantage of remote monitoring and store data about productivity and the availability of machines. The system had to be very simple to use and involve very low cost installation.

Solution developed

The system we devised logs the status of each machine, creating a production history. Managers are informed if a breakdown happens and is not resolved within the time frame assigned.

Managers can have mobile access to see what happened (machine status, time, person responsible) and the opportunity to act when required. As a result of the system, night shift reaction time has improved significantly. Workforce motivation has also improved, knowing that if they do not act they will receive a call from their manager and the event will be logged in the system, affecting their monthly bonus.

Our system implements a novel approach to monitoring activities by using a range of remote monitoring technologies and expanding the communication potential of the main monitoring system. The aim was to provide a cost effective solution enabling access to plant information. The remote monitoring greatly extends the range of activities that can be carried out outside the plant. It creates the opportunity to have full control over the plant’s status without having personnel responsible for the task continuously waiting by the machines.

Information about the status of the device can be accessed anytime and anywhere, very useful in the case of an emergency or damage to expensive devices or products, or for preventing unexpected breakdowns in a system which could be expensive or dangerous.