Data analytics specialist ioCurrents and ifm group of companies, a global leader of innovative automation solutions, have joined forces to alert ship operators of serious equipment deterioration and misalignment by analyzing vibration sensor data.
Traditionally, the maritime industry has used annual vibration surveys to pinpoint anomalous equipment behavior, but this does not help seafarers identify potential issues caused by vibrations when onboard so that corrective action can be taken before a serious engine or generator malfunction causes major voyage disruption.
However, ioCurrents has teamed up with ifm to produce vibration data analytics to give notifications in real time so seafarers can create Reliability-Centered Maintenance (RCM) plans. This allows repairs to be made in time before a serious issue arises due to equipment breakdowns.
Working with equipment manufacturers, ioCurrents can build a complete vibration analysis report which will summarize all vibrations on a vessel to show looseness, friction and impact across all equipment onboard the vessel. Alerts can be set-up if vibrations fall outside prescribed vibration specifications.
Crews can then use this information to schedule appropriate maintenance work in good time to avoid expensive delays or off-hires.
As an example, one of ioCurrents’ customers has had chronic problems with loose mechanical components due to excessive vibration and have incurred multiple failures that range from $40,000-80,000 plus further expenses caused by downtime, labor, drydock time and additional parts.
Using ifm’s sensitive vibration sensors, ioCurrents was able to use the high frequency vibration data to prescribe thresholds on friction, looseness and impact. Since onboarding the vibration sensors, within 90 days, ioCurrents has caught two imminent failures with impact and looseness alerts to prevent $100,000-plus in parts, downtime, drydock time and labor costs.
“ifm has a long pedigree of supplying hyper-accurate vibration data which we can use to determine when the crew needs to be alerted once manufacturer’s thresholds have been breached. In this way repairs can be affected before serious equipment malfunctions happen saving ship operators time and money,” said Kiersten Henderson, Ph.D., Senior Data Scientist for ioCurrents.
“Teaming up with ioCurrents was a great way to ensure that maritime clients received actionable insights from the data picked up by our sensors. Equipment malfunctions due to vibrations can be costly, not only from an operational point of view, but can also adversely affect the crew’s mental and physical well-being. Being able to react quickly to alerts so that potentially serious problems can be nipped in the bud is so important. Not only does it save money but is important from a safety and sustainability perspective too,” said Jordan Annunziato, Application Engineer of ifm.