1660244521643 Autofair2017day1article5

Instant analytics aid in production optimization

Nov. 17, 2017
Rockwell Automation advances its scalable FactoryTalk Analytics offering, from Devices to Machines and beyond

Since the dawn of industry, end users and machine builders have thirsted for a better understanding of the real-time performance and health status of their production assets. This week, that dream of real-time analytics and instant visibility moved a few steps closer to reality at the Information Solutions exhibit at the Automation Fair event in Houston, where Rockwell Automation demonstrated three major advances in advanced analytics under the umbrella of its FactoryTalk software offering. These included two recently commercialized offerings, FactoryTalk Analyics for Devices and FactoryTalk Analytics for Machines, as well as Project Scio, a broader analytics effort currently under development. 

Enabling machine-level analytics

First up, Le Roy Howe, commercial engineer, Information Solutions, Rockwell Automation, showed how FactoryTalk Analytics for Machines could be wirelessly linked to a clean-in-place (CIP) skid from Central States Industrial using a Rockwell Automation Allen Bradley 9300-ENA cloud gateway. An add-on instruction downloaded to the skid’s controller allowed the gateway to gather real-time data from the skid’s instruments and deliver it to the subscription-based analytics service on Microsoft Azure.

[sidebar id =1]

"This lets us generate reports, dashboards and other graphics related to machine performance for both machine builders and end users,” Howe explained. “We can even rearrange and prioritize this information to show details that they want most, such as top five, top 10 or top 100 event history items," reported Howe. "We can also show mean time out of state (MTOS), mean time in state (MTIS), mean time to repair (MTTR), and other key performance indicator (KPI) guidance based on data.” FactoryTalk Analytics for Machines also allows end users or machine builders to compare machine performance among fleets of similar assets across global operations and organizations.

“In addition, our gateway is connecting directly from Ethernet on the plant floor to the Internet, which means no server or added personnel are needed to maintain it,” Howe said. “FactoryTalk Analytics for Machine is cloud-ready and plug-and-play. The result is business value that's simple and repeatable."

Comprehensive component health 

In a second in-booth demonstration, Rob Prashad, commercial engineer, Rockwell Automation, detailed the capabilities of FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices, which adds to the overall capabilities of FactoryTalk Analytics by examining and evaluating the health of individual automation system components. When plugged into an automation network, FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices automatically recognizes and inventories all connected devices on the network and creates dashboards for their monitoring and management.

He also showed how FactoryTalk Analytics coordinates with Rockwell Automation's Project Scio initiative to organize and combine many disparate data sources to create "storyboards" that users can employ to optimize their operations.

"From the enterprise side, these sources can include enterprise resource planning (ERP), FactoryTalk Historian, SAP, RabbitMQ message-queueing software, big data or supporting web services. All of this and more can go into Project Scio, which automatically mashes together and orchestrates the data to create uniform display grids and reports. All of these real-time analytics are scalable at the operations layer."

Prashad added that when users log-in to Scio, they are first brought to a landing pages with their favorite reports and others shared among fellow users. This allow all parties to view applicable KPIs, and produce new favorite reports based on the changing needs of their applications.

"For example, they can progress from energy consumed by a system over time to energy consumed per product produced.” Prashad explained. And perhaps most importantly, any user can create the views they need—without having to be a data scientists or developer. 

For a deeper dive into Project Scio, view the video of Frank Kulascewicz and Andrew Ellis demonstrating the tool’s capabilities at this week’s Automation Perspectives media event:

About the Author

Jim Montague | Executive Editor

Jim Montague is executive editor of Control. 

Sponsored Recommendations

Measurement instrumentation for improving hydrogen storage and transport

Hydrogen provides a decarbonization opportunity. Learn more about maximizing the potential of hydrogen.

Get Hands-On Training in Emerson's Interactive Plant Environment

Enhance the training experience and increase retention by training hands-on in Emerson's Interactive Plant Environment. Build skills here so you have them where and when it matters...

Learn About: Micro Motion™ 4700 Config I/O Coriolis Transmitter

An Advanced Transmitter that Expands Connectivity

Learn about: Micro Motion G-Series Coriolis Flow and Density Meters

The Micro Motion G-Series is designed to help you access the benefits of Coriolis technology even when available space is limited.