PlantRun has specialised facilities that enable manufacturing knowledge management through its use as a central knowledge base and as a manufacturing expert system.
Central Knowledge Base
PlantRun can be used as a central knowledge base of support information for system users, production operators, maintenance engineers etc. It allows instant access to relevant information such as standard operating procedures, routine maintenance instructions, machine schematics, emergency contact numbers or procedures, training videos and much more. It allows all the information that is usually 'filed away...somewhere!' to be kept in one location, properly indexed and ready for fast access when required.
It is also an invaluable aid to operator training. With images, documents and video readily available on screen new staff (or infrequent users) can be quickly familiarised with equipment and operating procedures.
The facility has particular value in emergency or critical situations when time is of the essence. Being able to instantly call up the correct information can avert a crisis.
To access the information needed any number of icons or buttons can be placed on displays. Clicking on the relevant icon or button brings up the right information. Typically in a production plant, "spanner" icons would be placed on screen next to the item of equipment to which they refer. Clicking on an icon shows all the associated files. Any number of information files can be linked to an icon.
Icons are hidden from view in normal operation, automatically appearing when Plantrun detects a problem such as a specific alarm condition or incorrect sequence of events.
All common file formats for documents, images, sound & video can be easily stored and indexed making it simple to build an on line knowledge base for manufacturing knowledge management.
Manufacturing Expert System
PlantRun features a manufacturing Expert System which is ideal for use in complex processes or where process variables need to be tightly controlled to ensure quality and repeatability of the end product. By documenting the expertise of your most skilled staff, anyone can provide the ideal response to problems that occur by following clearly defined decision and action routines.
Organise your knowledge into any number of decision "trees", with the root of each tree being the problem that you need to solve. Below the root you define all the decision and action nodes needed to find the solution to each problem.
When a problem occurs the user selects the decision tree related to that problem and they are presented with a series of questions and possible answers. Some questions provide simple multiple choice answers. Where PlantRun can retrieve the answer to a question from its realtime or batch databases, the user is offered that answer to help them make a decision. Where the answer to a question requires the user to make a more difficult or subjective choice, PlantRun can offer assistance in the form of documents, pictures, sound or video.
Many questions involve simple checks such as "Was the steam pressure OK", "How much water was added", etc. Often PlantRun can retrieve the information needed to answer these questions from the realtime database or batch records. If sufficient process measurements are available to allow an entire decision tree to be answered in this way, then Expert System can be configured to run the tree at regular intervals with the potential to automatically diagnose problems as they develop.
PlantRun systems are very cost effective with typical payback of just weeks or months. System prices vary depending upon the number of machines monitored and features required.
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