Production data is a valuable resource. Used in relevant ways, they can significantly improve industrial performance. Safran Landing Systems is convinced of this. The world number one in landing and braking systems for civil and military aircraft launched, in 2021, an ambitious project to collect and process production data. The project is all the more ambitious as it involves deploying a solution for acquiring and using data from production resources deployed in 14 Safran Landing Systems factories, spread across three continents. Which was a real challenge since no less than 800 means of production had to be connected: machine tools, robots, heat treatment installations, etc.
Safran Landing Systems has already taken up this formidable challenge of data collection since the machines at its Canadian sites in Mirabel (Montreal) and Ajax (Toronto), American sites in Walton and French sites in Bidos and Molsheim, are connected to SIMATIC WinCC from Siemens, the control and data acquisition system from Siemens. And by the end of the year, 80% of the company’s sites will be connected. The results are already there. In Mirabel, for example, where SIMATIC WinCC ensures the collection and monitoring of approximately 14,000 parameters from more than 30 production means, the retouching rate has notably been halved. The analysis of all these parameters makes it possible, in fact, to improve the efficiency of diagnostics and to facilitate the identification of the root causes when an event occurs, both from the point of view of the quality of the product and the operation of the machine.
The major Safran Landing Systems machine connection project, launched two years ago, is therefore coming to an end. The valuable information collected can now be used to improve the company’s performance on a variety of aspects: quality, production cycle times, maintenance, availability of industrial equipment, optimization of production costs, etc. Without forgetting energy. Optimizing the energy efficiency of industrial machines and processes is indeed one of the priorities today.
Real-time monitoring and alerts
Thus, the connection of industrial resources to the SIMATIC WinCC platform allows the production and maintenance teams of each site to have a local dashboard delivering, through the processing of the collected data, a set of indicators for each machine and to be alerted in real time of any possible deviation in a parameter. The goal is to act when needed, where needed, without waiting for the manufacturing of a part to be completed. This data is also sent to a centralized Cloud platform which allows advanced analyzes to be carried out and cross-references with other software sources (MES, ERP, quality database, etc.).
“ If we take the example of quality, it is sometimes difficult to identify the origin of certain problems. It is very time-consuming work. The collection of different parameters, their processing and their correlation with other data, via algorithms using artificial intelligence (AI) techniques, will allow us to identify and correct the problem more quickly. We rely, for example, on these tools to further improve our heat treatment processes, the slightest deviation from which can have subsequent consequences on the manufacturing process of our products and then their operation. This data acquisition and collection platform will make accessible the world of data, which is still so little exploited and has immense potential. », explains Francis Rossignol, VP SMART Factory at Safran Landing Systems.