Twitter may be blocked in your country or by your firewall. Click here to visit the Twitter page.
Follow Parker Hannifin on social media:
Whether train driving is done manually or automatically, human being remains responsible for safety. Man is increasingly assisted by automatic means to control and communicate with his machine. This assistance is provided by systems called Human Machine Interfaces (HMI).
The objective of the HMI is to make the facilities more functional, better adapted to the environment and to avoid risks. For this reason, electronic systems are growing to benefit passenger and goods safety but also for the productivity of equipment.
In trains, the HMI are deployed on different mechanical components in the form of electronic systems. They can be placed on the mechanical components of a pressure circuit to monitor and control their operation.
The sensor is an element of the HMI more and more used in the architecture of mechanical systems of a train, especially in pressure circuits. The assembly of sensors on mechanical components allows precise control of movement in pressurized fluid transfer systems, thus improving safety.
These sensors are detection devices with signals that make it possible to bring intelligence to the control of the movement. They provide the data needed to foster a reactive and preventative environment. Position sensors, for example, make it easy to control the open or closed position of a valve on a fluid transfer circuit.
The use of a sensor with electrical or contactless technology minimizes the overall cost of implementing a secure mechanical system. Indeed, it allows to quickly and accurately detect the open or closed position of a circuit, without separate encoders and especially without additional mechanics.
The data transmitted by the sensor allows the monitoring and, when the information flows in both directions, the control of the mechanical component itself. Position data available improve risk control and prevention by quickly detecting any problem and saving it to databases. The HMI then makes it possible to avoid malfunctions that can lead to downtime or productivity losses.
Several fluids are circulating in a train between a tank and actuators such as brake shoes and motors. The medium conveyed range from compressed air, water or glycol water, to diesel or hydraulic oil. Some circuits need to be secured.
Well known for its expertise in fluid transfer solution, Parker Legris has developed a new lockable valve with sensor, adapted to the low-pressure circuit for compressed air supply. Thanks to this valve with open or closed position detection, the user quickly identifies the valve status and can act faster at the exact location.
This new Parker Legris valve has two additional functions:
To adapt to the railway equipment constraints, the new valves have a robust IP67 protection box at the sensor. They are 100 percent leak-tested and have an inductive sensor electrically connected to the HMI.
Electronic sensors are now essential safety instruments in railway vehicles. They are expected to expand to more mechanical components, because safety is at the heart of the innovation of railway market players, and more widely of manufacturers like Parker.
Article contributed by Céline Joyeau, marketing development manager, Low Pressure Connectors Europe Division
Learn How Cold Weather Affects Connector Design for Rail Applications
Key Cold Weather Design Factors for Connector Technology in Rail
14 Nov 2018
Lighter, versatile, non-corroding and cost-effective. These are some of the advantages as to why manufacturers are increasingly replacing metals with plastics for product development. Plastic injection molding is a key component in a shifting manufacturing landscape and has grown beyond specialty applications. Today, it’s a sophisticated process for producing parts requiring machinery and tooling of increasing complexity. As a result, injection molding operations are being pushed to the limits at a time when product quality and manufacturing efficiency is crucial to success.
Injection molding processes are exposed to a variety of potential risks over the course of production. From running unattended for long periods to equipment performance faults, operating without production monitoring can lead to real business headaches. Even the smallest of deviations or errors can impact an organization’s bottom line and result in significant ramifications including line downtime, increased scrap, late shipments and the biggest factor of all, a dissatisfied customer.
There are many variables affecting the injection molding process and each impacts product quality. The variations in temperature, humidity or machine pressure can lead to process or mechanical breakdown. By regularly monitoring the status and condition of processes and equipment, you’re able to identify potential problems and select a course of action to rectify it.
A continuous condition monitoring program provides a valuable amount of information for predicting machinery failure or process variation aiding in the analysis of the root cause of the problem. This solution provides reliable and useful data to assess the health and condition of injection molding machines and processes.
The following two case studies showcase how IoT-based condition monitoring solutions help injection molding operators solve production issues while increasing safety, productivity and quality.
A large injection molding company that produces components for the medical device industry struggled with maintaining the quality of a particular molded part. Production runs were inconsistent due to temperature and pressure anomalies in the mold injection lines, which resulted in short shot, or incompletely formed parts. This caused production downtime, as well as increased part inspections and scrap.
Accurate and continuous monitoring of the temperature and pressure lines with SensoNODE™ Sensors and Voice of the Machine™ Software revealed a small leak in a pressure hose that caused the pressure to drop at certain times during the molding process. With the hose replaced, SensoNODE and Voice of the Machine Software ensured the pressure remained stable during the process. In addition, data collection was much easier than utilizing standard gauges, which would be in difficult-to-see locations within the machine.
The injection molding company was able to fix the problem quickly, minimizing downtime and scrap. The company also avoided a serious product recall risk that comes from shipping out-of-spec molded parts to a medical device customer.
A customer that makes washing machines and dryers had been using manual diagnostic test tools for their manufacturing processes and machines where a majority are hydraulic-based assets. Two pieces of equipment in particular – an injection molding machine and a stamping press – are driven by the same hydraulic power unit (HPU).
The HPU is located 20 feet off the floor at the top of the machines. In order to diagnose or evaluate each asset, a maintenance technician must use a manual diagnostic tool connected to the HPU to collect pressure changes at several points of interest. A second technician would be on the floor watching and cycling the machine.
Those technicians would then test several points individually, which took hours. Because the manual diagnostic devices have long cords that connect the sensors to the handheld meters, the set up for testing was cumbersome and time consuming. Technicians would shut down the machine due to safety risks, then set up the tools to take readings, which further extended downtime and led to missed revenue opportunities.
The customer needed a solution that allowed a single maintenance technician to test multiple functions simultaneously as well as take readings from the floor while also observing asset processes.
By installing SensoNODE Sensors at each of the five points of interest, the technician is now able to run the machine and use Voice of the Machine Software to track all pressure measurements at once, as well as watch the machine functions from a safe area.
Being able to monitor multiple points at the same time simplifies the troubleshooting of a complex system, which helps technicians quickly resolve issues that minimizes downtime and saves money. In turn, the injection molding manufacturer’s customers receive quality products on time leading to increased satisfaction and loyalty.
Learn more about our injection molding solutions or speak to an engineer to discuss your injection molding issues.
Contributed by Dan Davis, product sales manager, SensoNODE Sensors and Voice of the Machine Software, Parker Hannifin.
Condition Monitoring in Injection Molding
Condition Monitoring for Today’s Metal Fab Industry
Injection Molding: Monitoring Multiple Points of Pressure
13 Nov 2018
Lubrication is essential to machine maintenance. Equipment properly lubricated reduces wear and tear during production, ensures temperatures are in check with operational standards, minimizes corrosion and helps keep contaminants and pollutants out of the system. Organizations will allocate nearly half of their total maintenance costs to lubrication-related activities. The biggest of them all is deploying the oil change.
An oil change makes certain machines are running smoothly and prolongs engine life. There’s incentive to changing oil regularly. However, therein lies the issue. Performing an oil change is straightforward enough, correct? Not quite. For technicians and mechanics, the traditional oil change process is much more tedious and hazardous. The likelihood of making a mess or even worse can be a costly mistake. Equipment downtime, lost production, employee safety and environmental integrity are factors an organization will risk when conducting an oil change.
A traditional maintenance oil change is cumbersome. From heavy machinery and power generation equipment to fleets and municipalities, changing oil involves thorough training on procedures and equipment and utilizing an arsenal of tools, which bring a multitude of challenges:
You can’t just stop performing oil changes. What is the solution then?
Parker's QuickFit Oil Change System is unlike anything else available in the marketplace. It’s radically transformed oil changes with a faster, cleaner and safer approach that hasn’t been accomplished until now. QuickFit is revolutionary, yet simple with a three-step process to purge, evacuate and refill oil.
The architecture of QuickFit eliminates oil spills and greatly reduces safety hazards. This is achieved through an accessible, single connection point that allows oil to drain directly to the waste containment, and then can be used to extract the used oil from the filter and pump in new oil. The total number of steps in the process is reduced, which means a faster and safer oil change.
QuickFit combines ease-of-use with comprehensive functionality. Minimal training is necessary and maintenance is simplified as oil changes can be done efficiently and effectively. Productivity goes up while the chances of an error occurring during an oil change are greatly reduced.
Watch the video to see how a traditional oil change compares to Parker’s QuickFit Oil Change System.
Contributed by Matt Walley, product sales manager, Quick Coupling Division Division of Parker Hannifin.
How to Change Your Engine and Machine Oil Faster, Cleaner and Safer
No More Spills! 8 Reasons Why You Need a New Oil Change Process
Improve the Efficiency of Your Fleet Service Team
1 Nov 2018
A history lesson isn’t necessary to know manufacturing has evolved over time. From the advent of mechanics to the electrification of factories for mass production to equipping production lines with robotics, the world of machines and processes is evolving before our eyes once again.
Manufacturing facilities are getting leaner. This isn’t by design. Baby Boomers who once dominated the landscape are now exiting the workforce in droves, so much so the industry is facing a deficit of 3.5 million workers. This has put a strain on organizations as they seek younger and less experienced personnel to do more with less. Since many manufacturers are operating with smaller staffs, equipment processes and manual checks are falling through the cracks.
Plant floors are less staffed, but more connected than ever before. Thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT), data is available at our fingertips to harness and apply the information into predictive analytics to achieve higher levels of intelligence, orchestration and optimization. Logically, this led to condition monitoring.
A major component of predictive maintenance, condition monitoring presumes machinery will deteriorate and eventually breakdown. By being proactive and monitoring the performance of equipment through technology, data can provide the information to strategically schedule maintenance before an issue creates unexpected downtime. This prevents consequential damages and ensures the reliability of machines can remain high.
Condition monitoring utilizes various process parameters such as temperature, pressure, humidity, current, vibration and flow along with fluid media samples to monitor performance. Over time, these indicators of system and equipment health will become more predictable, reducing unscheduled downtime and increasing product integrity.
To achieve condition monitoring and a predictive maintenance program, it’s not enough to purchase test instruments and put them in the hands of untrained personnel. It’s imperative to let go of tried and tested methods and establish a new culture and approach of looking at maintenance. This means constantly developing, implementing, managing, measuring and improving condition monitoring. It requires commitment and full participation, otherwise the vision is lost and the chances of a successful program decline. There are five things you need to know to ensure your condition monitoring program is prosperous.
Read our new white paper, "Why Preventative Maintenance is Holding You Back" to discover how condition monitoring tools allow manufacturing organizations to predict the future, reduce their costs, and do much more with less.
Which equipment are you going to monitor? You’re not going to pick random machines to evaluate. An Equipment Criticality Ranking (ECR) and/or Reliability Centered Maintenance (RCM) should be performed. An ECR identifies and addresses potential risks associated with the operation of the processing facilities. Failure scenarios are pinpointed, ranked and quantified in relation to the safeguards that protect against the scenario. The RCM focuses on avoiding the failure consequences, not the failure modes by ensuring systems continue to do what its users want in its present operating context. These are comprehensive lists of assets sorted in a ranked order and helps identify and determine which equipment should be tested on a regular basis. By performing ECR and/or RCM, organizations can develop unique maintenance schedules for each critical asset.
Choosing the appropriate personnel to be involved in predictive maintenance and condition monitoring is crucial. A common mistake organizations make is hastily assembling a team of their best mechanics rather than seeking the right technician who has the key attributes to master technology and perform investigative work. The selection of a condition monitoring team is handled in different ways from one organization to the next, but should include individuals who demonstrate loyalty, intelligence and always pursuing training and self-development.
Technicians involved in a predictive maintenance program receive little if any training beyond the information instructed by the vendor system. In fact, personnel seek valuable training that directly impacts the effectiveness and success of the program. It’s crucial that all individuals are educated and can demonstrate the skillset to operate equipment, interpret the data, and report the information in a clear and concise way. A shortfall in this area will affect the quality of the overall initiative.
Practice makes perfect. The same holds true for condition monitoring. There are a number of variables that can affect the accuracy of data. When it comes to testing equipment, collect data in the same location and on the same surface utilizing the same instruments to ensure consistency. Also, reviewing and interpreting information should be conducted in a timely manner. Otherwise, this will lead to unidentified equipment failures and unscheduled downtime.
You’ve inspected the equipment and collected the data, now what? It’s time to take action. Sounds simple enough, but there are many organizations who fail to take corrective action when machine anomalies are flagged. A predictive maintenance program receives the necessary support and funding to ensure success.
In today’s smart manufacturing world, condition monitoring is essential to determine machine health and implement the correct maintenance to ensure maximum performance and longevity. However, this cannot be achieved without having the right equipment, people, training and execution in place. Without a strategic plan, condition monitoring and predictive maintenance can become a wasted resource rather than a benefit component of your operation.
Learn more about condition monitoring strategies on your plant floor.
Article contributed by Dan Davis, product sales manager, SensoNODE™ Sensors and Voice of the Machine™ Software, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
The Importance of Condition Monitoring to Your Business
Preventive Maintenance vs. Predictive Maintenance
11 Oct 2018
The PASS (Personal Alert Safety System) alarm sounds. Smoke and flames engulf the area. Your breathing air supply is quickly diminishing. Evading the fiery scene is not an option. In this crucial moment, a firefighter entrenched in the middle of a blaze with a dwindling air supply turns to the single-most important piece of equipment.
Firefighters, HAZMAT crews and even underwater scuba divers should have a deep understanding of their breathing apparatus and possess the knowledge of preventative maintenance for the particular unit being employed. Simple issues such as blocked air or improper connections on self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) gear can instantaneously become serious problems under extreme circumstances when time is of the essence. Equipment of this magnitude in which people are entrusting their lives must follow rigorous guidelines.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), founded in 1896, has established more than 300 consensus codes and standards to minimize the possibility and devastating effects of fire and to ensure firefighters and emergency services personnel operate safely in the most hostile environments. Through their own research and outreach to over 9,000 volunteer committee members, NFPA’s codes and standards are revised every three to five years for quality and safety, and range from hazards and risks associated with different types of building construction to inspection requirements and evaluation of firefighting equipment and instruments.
In particular, NFPA 1981 defined the standard of respiratory protection and functional requirements for SCBA. This includes the design, performance, testing and certification of the breathing apparatus. But, did not specify requirements for any accessories that could be attached to the certified product not approved by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
Over time, NFPA 1981 has undergone notable changes including standards for redundant low pressure warning devices, heads up display (HUD) to signal the amount of an air cylinder’s available capacity, new voice communication intelligibility requirements, testing for increased facepiece lens integrity and most importantly of all, acknowledging Emergency Breathing Safety Systems (EBSS), commonly referred to as buddy breathers.
A Buddy Breather is a rescue technique when two people share one air source, alternately breathing from it. There had been great hesitation by NFPA to recognize the buddy breather over technical challenges such as having the ability to deliver twice the volume of airflow to ensure adequate air to both users. To this day, the buddy breather is considered an accessory and not a requirement. NFPA, NIOSH, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or any manufacturer do not recommend or approve sharing air between firefighters.
However, in a compromised emergency situation, the buddy breather could be the single-most important piece of equipment on a firefighters’ protective suit. This survival accessory features a small manifold with a hose that detaches from the regulator. The air bottle can be managed down to 125-135 pounds per square inch (PSI) and attaches to the manifold, which contains a male and female coupling. The setup allows a firefighter in need of compressed air to connect their coupling to another firefighters’ air bottle in the event of an emergency.
Herein lies the problem which the new NFPA coupling standard has resolved. There is a variety of SCBA gear available today for fire departments to utilize. And each one could feature a different type of coupling system. If “Fire Department A” and “Fire Department B” are both on-scene of a fire, chances are high their couplings are not compatible to each other’s buddy breathers, making them non-operational and ineffective across the two groups of firefighters
A Universal Emergency Breathing Safety System (UEBSS) standard has been adopted into the NFPA 1981-2018 Edition. The new UEBSS standard requires all SCBA manufacturers to produce units that accommodate Rapid Intervention Crew Universal Air Coupling (RIC UAC) to be in compliance for firefighting. The universal coupling interface chosen will allow an air bottle lacking compressed air to be transfilled from another bottle regardless of the breathing system manufacturer. Each air bottle would then have equal amounts of air in them after the fill. This means a firefighter can effectively use the buddy breather system to provide air to another firefighter without concern for the brand of SCBA gear.
In fact, the NFPA volunteer committee selected a Parker quick coupling design to adopt as the industry standard for manufacturers to follow for designing and building interchangeable couplings. A universally standard coupling compatible across all new and existing SCBA gear ensures firefighters will not have to remove their facepiece during an air supply malfunction or failure. Plus, fire departments and personnel can become thoroughly familiar with one standardized system and how it works. This ensures connectability of all air line couplings that may need to be connected or disconnected in the event of an emergency.
SCBA is a critical component in the personal protective equipment (PPE) used by firefighters and emergency personnel. Regardless of rank and tenure, firefighters can encounter a problem with their gear. When seconds matter the most, emergency procedures such as the buddy breather has significant influence on firefighter safety. And with a universal coupling system, the chance of survival only increases for firefighters.
Contact us for more information on Parker’s NFPA selected coupling design.
Article contributed by Todd Lambert, market sales manager, Quick Coupling Division, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
How to Change Your Engine and Machine Oil Faster, Cleaner and Safer
No More Spills! 8 Reasons Why You Need a New Oil Change Process
Improve the Efficiency of Your Fleet Service Team
4 Oct 2018
We are pleased to announce that Parker Low Pressure Connector Europe Division of Parker Hannifin Corporation, the global leader in motion and control technologies, has been awarded the new International Automotive Task Force (IATF) 16949:2016 certification.
A Worldwide Recognized Certification
The Division is once again demonstrating its ambition to be the reference partner in high-demand markets.
This globally recognized certification indicates that Parker LPCE has achieved a very high level in terms of quality performance, system capability, warranty requirement and customer satisfaction.
The Scope of this New Standard
The global automotive and transportation industry faces significant challenges, including rapid growth of emerging markets and the need to improve performance and reliability while ensuring the best cost-effectiveness. In response to these challenges, the International Automotive Task Force (IATF) has published the new IATF standard 16949:2016.
This new international standard describes the requirements for quality management systems for organizations working in the production, service and / or accessory parts of the automotive and transport industry.
As IATF points out, this new international standard aims to develop a quality management system designed to:
Provide continuous improvement,
Highlight the prevention of failures,
Include requirements and tools specific to the automotive sector,
Promote the decrease in variation and waste within the supply chain.
The new IATF 169491:2016 replaces ISO / TS 16949: 2009. This new normative reference is based on the requirements of ISO 9001: 2015, supplemented by the demands of the automotive industry. This new framework strengthens the management system in terms of continuous improvement, risk analysis prevention and leadership.
Note that since October 2017, it is mandatory to transition to this new standard IATF 16949:2016.
A Significant benefit for Customers
The LPCE Division has reinforced its quality management demands in order to meet the following criteria within the scope of this certification:
Product safety concepts
Ethical responsibility of the company
Inclusion of specific customer requirements
This certification has an additional value because our Division is one of the first French companies to have obtained it.
The LPCE Division confirms the performance of the company's management system, and is a guarantee for the major players of the automotive and transportation industry an assurance in the continuity and reliability of its systems and products.
For more information, please contact our dedicated transportation team.
Download our certificate of compliance IATF 16949:2016
Learn more about this standard
For more information on LPCE products, download our transport brochure
Visit our website to discover more on our products
Article contributed by Laurent Orcibal, ebusiness manager, Low Pressure Connector Europe, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
Overcoming Pneumatic Front Spoiler Lip System Design Challenges | Case Study
Key Cold Weather Design Factors for Connector Technology in Rail
27 Sep 2018