The remote asset monitoring project at the exit routes of Vale’s Southern Ore Patio, in São Luís, has changed the daily routine of the technical team responsible for the unit’s hydraulic inspection and asset control through the implementation of wireless sensor technology for machine monitoring in a new control center.
Contextually, the North and South Patio are the most important exit routes of the North Port. In turn, the South Patio has two critical ore output routes, which need to be in full operation to guarantee the 50% production of the port.
To avoid an unscheduled stoppage of the equipment, it was necessary to replace the central lubrication system with a system of pumps that performs the so-called “intelligent lubrication”, which happens online, remotely, and in an automated way.
This system provides the corrective actions at the correct intervals, minimizing friction and optimizing the service life of the bearings and machines.
Follow the entire improvement and implementation process below:
Thus, there were 232 in bearing housings, 28 in hydro variators, 28 in gearboxes, 14 in pumps, and 20 in electric motors on the ships.
The goal of the investment was to solve monitoring problems in blocked access sites or projection of material.
They usually present a risk of accidents for the teams responsible for the inspections and generate failures in the maintenance processes.
In short, ensuring the reliability of the machines from remote and online collections, performed by an intelligent system, is tied to the pillars of safety and technology.
The evolution of hydraulic inspection came from the asset control center, where the inspector has access to information from the monitored machines.
The LubeControl Touch is an innovative lubrication system, with two pumps and a reservoir dedicated to remote control and by overview.
Therefore, the south patio asset control center gathers access and information needed for performance management through alerts and people.
“The contributions of the monitoring implementation were enormous, demonstrating the Vale company’s interest in being aligned with the most current concepts of Industry 4.0, aiming for growth and evolution,” points out Athos Henrique, Technician in Electro-electronics at Vale and responsible for the project.
Other benefits highlighted are the improvement in the collection points that used to be done manually, now done in an automated way, with zero exposure to accident risks.
And also, the creation of an installation schedule, which facilitated the execution of preventive measures for asset failure.
According to Athos, “the surprising points are the simplicity of installation, configuration, cost viability, and the short, medium, and long-term results”, he highlights.
About the team, the project had the support of the co-responsible, Geovanne Silva, Mechanical Technician, following the processes together with the hydraulic team of the patio.
This interaction has allowed the staff to develop in the face of remote monitoring technology, as well as to evolve together, through information autonomy.
In summary, the execution of the project began in November 2020 and presented the first results in July/August 2021, after installation and parameterization of the sensors, triggering the first alarms of criticality of the equipment for analysis and decision making.
The results are secure data collection for inspectors, scheduled maintenance actions before failure, and significant cost savings.
In this sense, they reinforce Dynamox’s purpose of ensuring safety for people as well as reliability and predictability for assets.
Check out more details in the video below!
Finally, read about online route management and get to know DynaSens, the sensitive inspection tool that helps your maintenance team.
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