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The 5 Required Capabilities of Machine Health: 1) Comprehensive Asset Coverage

Illustration for Capabilities of Machine Health series. This is part one: comprehensive asset coverage

For a successful Machine Health solution, you need 5 capabilities – as broken down in the acronym C.A.R.E.S. Each capability in themself is a great step forward. But the real – and measurable – value is in how they interact and build on each other. In other words, you’re missing opportunities if you can’t leverage all 5. For part 1 of this blog series, we put a spotlight on the “C” – Comprehensive Asset Coverage – and how this fits into the larger Machine Health picture.  

Comprehensive Asset Coverage ensures you avoid downtime in the most cost-effective way possible. To make this happen you’ll need the right spread of solutions: from AI-driven prescriptive analytics for your critical assets, down to integrated route-based analysis for less important machines – along everything in between. In short, you need the right level of service at the right time. Meanwhile, with the correct support, you can also go after the ultimate longer-term goals: global scaling and total digital transformation.   

A Warm Blanket Doesn’t Mean Blanket Coverage

“Have no fear. While having Comprehensive Asset Coverage is often described as a warm blanket, it doesn’t mean you need blanket coverage,” says James Newman, Head of Product and Portfolio Marketing at Augury.

C.A.R.E.S.: The Five Required Capabilities of Machine Health

C: Comprehensive Asset Coverage
A: AI: Accurate & Prescriptive
R: Reach At Global Scale|
E: Engagement & Autonomy
S: Services End-To-End

“Yes, people are looking for that security to go home after work and not worry about getting called in to put out another fire. But for that level of reassurance, you don’t need the full package on all your assets – just the right selection. At the end of the day, it’s about not just asset care but also streamlining the processes and costs around asset care,” says James.

“At the core you need the power of AI to solve your major issues, which also enables us to extend that knowledge to assets of lower tiers of criticality, but tht right level of serv ice that they need. The underlying goal is simple: avoid downtime in the most cost-efficient way possible.”

What is Comprehensive Asset Coverage?

To realize the value of machine health, you need a solution that effectively monitors all your required assets and does not add unnecessary overhead.

AI: The Great Enabler of Comprehensive Assets Coverage

“At the same time, it’s not about covering just a handful of assets,” notes Hari Viswanathan, Director of Product Marketing at Augury. “Potentially, you should be able to diagnose hundreds of different machines – especially if you want to scale across a larger manufacturing organization.”

“It’s also not about just sticking a sensor on an asset, collecting data and spotting anomalies. Rather it’s about being able to diagnose the issues. And that’s where Accurate Prescriptive AI shines: it tells you what’s wrong, what to do about it, and in what timeframe.”

“And in terms of efficiency, there are now algorithms that are orders of magnitudes more effective than humans in terms of coverage and flagging faults in critical assets,” says Assaf Barak, VP AI & Physics at Augury. “Algorithms have actually become so strong they can even take on diagnosing new machines without starting from scratch. And over time this will only improve. As we gather more data, we can gain more insights into the assets – to help diagnose the assets ever more accurately. And once you’ve scaled, you can gather further data across many facilities to gain even further insights for your maintenance teams.” 

Root Out Routine: Beware Of Fake AI

“Combining engaged human expertise with AI is where the real magic happens. You can do so much more stuff faster, while missing less,” says James. However, with the rising awareness of the effectiveness of monitoring assets with a machine health program, many monitoring companies are over-claiming their abilities – especially in terms of their AI. 

“This is important when you are implementing new technology: you don’t want to add more processes and steps in their already busy day – you want to reduce them.”

“There are many simple asset monitoring companies that may, or may not, have some form of anomaly detection – which of course is nothing new. And in theory, you can cover your rotating assets in a route-based manner. But no one has the time, people or resources to do this correctly in that manner,” says James. “You simply won’t win. You certainly won’t be able to scale.” 

Empowering Those Actually Covering the Assets

Meanwhile, covering more assets with continuous monitoring, even with great AI, often seems daunting to people who actually have to manage assets. To overcome this fear, solutions must be effective. “It’s about simplifying the professional lives of those on the floor and not making things more complicated,” says Hari.

“You need to prove it works – in terms of avoiding downtime – and that it’s easy to adapt into one’s workflow. This is important when you are implementing new technology: you don’t want to add more processes and steps in their already busy day – you want to reduce them.” 

“In this way, you also need the right support, not just in terms of having easily accessible vibration analysts and customer success managers. It’s a huge change and it needs the right change management to maximize the potential of such a program – from installation to scaling. And this support needs to reach everyone involved, from factory floor to C-Suite. Everyone needs to feel they are backed by an army of experienced teammates.”

“And that’s exactly the warm blanket feeling you need to find in order to properly cover your assets,” adds James. 

“But the real ROI is the journey to digital transformation that full AI-driven asset coverage can set you on. “

Avoiding Downtime: Great.
Full Digital Transformation: The Greater Goal. 

“Naturally, people love avoiding downtime thanks to prescriptive AI,” says Hari. “And they love to track the fast ROI attached to that. But the real ROI is the journey to digital transformation that full AI-driven asset coverage can set you on. You can now loop those short-term savings in terms of avoided asset downtime to actually fuel your digital transformation journey towards long-term savings. In other words, you can take those individual wins to go after the big – and scalable – vision on optimizing production while minimizing waste and emissions. When you kick start that journey up the value chain – you want to be using a solution that grows with you – not one that you need to replace two years into the program.”

“This is why I love my job,” says Assaf. “We are dealing with things we can touch and feel in the real world: machines made of metal, vibrating, and taken care of by professionals with cool hand tools ranging from hammers and screwdrivers right up to advanced laser systems for machine alignment. Then, in a way, these machines end up fusing with sophisticated algorithms that run somewhere in the Cloud. And then, from that huge server, the outputs from these algorithms are aimed back to the customer with their fancy tools to help them fix what needs to be fixed. I can very much connect with this idea: making the circle round.”

Thank you for reading the ‘5 Machine Health Capabilities and Their Interactions’ series. It’s a big one :).

Reach out if you want to learn more about how these work with Augury’s machine health solution. And if you missed any instalments, here are the other four parts:

2) Accurate & Prescriptive AI
3) Reach at Global Scale
4) Engagement & Autonomy
5) Services End-to-End

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