Machines have become an indispensable component of any type of industry, irrespective of whether it is a single one-man production unit or a large-scale multisite industry which manufactures almost every type of product in the market. When machines literally carry out the laborious and key steps of the product lifecycle, a system to monitor, analyze and control their performance is necessary. This is essentially carried out by industrial monitoring systems.
Diverse types of monitoring systems with unlimited applications
Industrial monitoring systems are designed for an innumerable number of platforms, with almost every type of industry applying them for better production and process quality. The type and complexity of the systems depend on their area of application and the sophistication of the machine to be monitored. They can be scheduled or used real-time and many come as integrated machines, a simple example being the accelerometer used to analyze vibrations in rotating machinery.
The parameters controlled by monitoring systems and their application are diverse such as:
- Environmental factors like temperature, pressure, volume, relative humidity etc are monitored in machines of fluid mechanics.
- Vibration, shock and noise analysis in electro-mechanical devices, automobiles, power generation equipment
- Cleanliness and in-service repair analysis
- Energy efficiency and power consumption
- Environment and air quality monitoring, and climate control
- Impact testing and damage prevention
- Video monitoring analysis for mining industry, shipment etc
- Infra-red radiation based thermal imaging
- Spectral imaging for chemical and life science industries
- Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for large on-site industries like agriculture, mining, surveillance and surveying, disaster management, pipelines, power lines, infrastructure building etc.
Research and improvement also a continuous process
The current focus in this area includes the development of real-time information and monitoring systems and integrated manufacturing and control. These systems provide flexibility, a user-friendly bi-directional data interface for supervision and control of system and manufacturing parameters, and remote interconnection for quick, real-time adjustment.