Chemical Plant Saves $220,000 with Predictive Maintenance Program

july97_Accelerometers
july97_Accelerometers

In May 1996, Mobil Chemical's plant in Belleville, ON, launched a new predictive maintenance (PDM) program on its oriented polypropylene film manufacturing lines. This division of Mobil Oil is a principal supplier of film used for cookie and snack food wrappers at companies such as Hostess and Frito Lay. The new program was designed to predict, and thus prevent, machine failures that result in significant downtime and lost revenues.

Mobil's Equipment Improvement Program (E.I.P.) team recognized the importance of monitoring the company's rotating equipment. The data collected could provide invaluable information about machine performance. After thorough evaluations, accelerometers and switchboxes were purchased from Vibra-Metrics, Inc., Hamden, CT.

The monitoring system accelerometers were permanently installed and wired to remote switchboxes to provide more consistent data than possible with portable data collectors. The switchboxes were mounted in easily accessible locations away from risk of personal injury (caused by proximity of rotating machinery), but not in locations so remote from the machinery that visual or auditory checks were impractical. Local installation of switchboxes also allowed technicians to see that the line was running normally, thus eliminating faulty readings that may have occurred if the readings were taken remotely.

The first installation of accelerometers and switchboxes was completed during a capital upgrade on one of the oriented polypropylene lines. Sensors and switchboxes were delivered and installed, and began providing data approximately 6 weeks from the time the order was placed.

From what Mobil's maintenance personnel learned during this initial installation, and with some preliminary planning, they were able to shorten the installation time for the next line to approximately 4 days. As of January 30, 1997, approximately 550 accelerometers had been installed on the two lines.

A predictive maintenance program schedules periodic readings for all mounted bearing accelerometers on a monthly or biweekly basis and for accelerometer locations cited on a troubleshooting list. Through April 1997 the staff recorded 27 "saves" that prevented unscheduled machine outages and equipment repair that could have cost the company more than $220,000. In all, 75 formal work order requests were issued by technicians to make repairs from diagnostics that could have resulted in eventual failures.

Savings are based on 1.5 times actual labor costs, actual parts costs, and a $2000/hour line cost. Cost avoidance reporting showed management that the program has paid for itself within the first year of operation. MT


Information supplied by Vibra-Metrics, Inc., Hamden CT; (800) 873-6748; e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Newsletter Sign Up



Your First Name:

Your Last Name:

Your E-Mail Address:

Would you like our Newsletter?:

Enter verification image value
  

Congratulations to Our Recent Survey Winner

Paul Kimble, a Vibration Analyst for General Motors, was chosen at random to win a $100 gift card for completing our recent online MT Buying Cycle Survey. You could win, too! Watch your e-mail for our next survey request.

Featured Supplier: Brady

bradyBrady Worldwide Inc. is an international manufacturer and marketer of complete solutions that identify and protect premises, products and people. Our products include high-performance labels and signs, safety devices, printing systems and software, and precision die-cut materials. Along with being a global leader in industrial and safety printing systems and solutions, we have been the company you trust when performance matters most since 1914. We serve customers in electronics, telecommunications, manufacturing, electrical, construction, education, medical and a variety of other industries.

Click here for more.

Featured White Paper: Spraying Systems Co.

SSCo Logo Color w tag

Clean Tanks Faster and Lower Operating Costs

Understanding all the tank cleaning equipment options is difficult because not all tank cleaning nozzles are created equal. Let Spraying Systems Co. show you how to reduce cleaning time, minimize liquid consumption and improve cleaning effectiveness. 

Click here to download the White Paper.