Uptime is simply the opposite of downtime – specifically unplanned downtime. The thing that ruins throughput and productivity, requiring unscheduled remedial maintenance and loss of production. Uptime is when your machines are correctly performing their intended functions – creating useful output and generating money for your business.
Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things (or Industrial Internet of Things if you prefer) are so closely related that we may as well use the terms interchangeably. Every day there seems to be some news about the Internet of Things and how it’s going to change everything – connected cars, connected people and even connected washing machines. Yet those connections don’t mean a whole lot without real use cases – yes, it’s now possible for your fridge to talk to your phone but that’s answering a question that nobody is asking, solving a problem which nobody cares about (although I’m prepared to eat my words in 5 years’ time when we are all sharing our fridge stats on whatever is the hottest fridge-based social network).
Prognostics – being able to predict when a machine will stop being able to perform its intended function is a key element of effective predictive maintenance and probably the most exciting thing that the Industrial Internet of Things / Industry 4.0 will enable. We’ve put together a short guide to help you understand this technology as applied to the manufacturing sector:
When talking to people we’ve found that the terms Preventative and Predictive can often mentally overlap; yet there’s such a marked difference in implementation techniques and real-world effects that it’s important to clearly define both before we get into their pros, cons and why Predictive Maintenance is the only future for manufacturers.