INVESTING in cranes and lifting systems for a plant or factory is one of the biggest financial undertakings that a company considers. Issues such as operator performance, safety management, maintenance and equipment monitoring are key elements to keep lifting equipment working smoothly and efficiently.
That’s according to Emil Berning, Managing Director of Konecranes, who said digital technology now allowed the company’s customers to access maintenance activities and cranes usage as well as condition information through a customer portal and remote monitoring technology.
“Quick, reliable and easy access to your crane information and how that impacts your lifting equipment’s safety, performance, maintenance and operation, is critical for positive corrective intervention – and all it takes is sensors and a modem attached to the crane to enable the data to start flowing,” he said.
“Machinery not performing as required, operator errors and delayed crucial maintenance are all issues that can affect safety and increase costs. Equipping cranes with Truconnect remote monitoring and utilising the information on the yourKonecranes portal can have a positive impact on safety and productivity.”
Berning said the key to any crane, or fleet of cranes, and lifting equipment operational success is the identification of safety or production risks, the establishment of proper preventive maintenance schedules and the correction of operator errors.
“Today, in our real-time and online world, our customers expect transparency and speed, and we do that through our digital ecosystem to bring safety and productivity improvements to their operations.”
Truconnect is a suite of remote service products and applications to support maintenance operations and drive improvements in safety and productivity. Truconnect Remote Monitoring collects condition, alerts/faults, usage and operating data from crane control system and sensors on an asset.
Remote Monitoring data is aggregated at yourKonecranes.com along with inspection and maintenance data enabling a comprehensive view and analysis of equipment condition, maintenance and operation.
Collected data varies depending on asset make and model but typically covers condition and expected service life of critical components, running time, lifted loads, motor starts, work cycles and emergency stops. Additional Truconnect options allow certain assets to be equipped with hoisting brake and/or inverter monitoring.
Truconnect Remote Monitoring notifies users of brake service life, hoist overloads, emergency-stops and over-temperature occurrences through text or email alerts, allowing for prompt response.
Global Technical Support Specialist at Konecranes Marius Naude said that while remote connection was available as a standard option on new Konecranes equipment it could also be installed as a retrofit to existing cranes, even those not made by the company.
“Truconnect is the quickest way to address a non-performance issue on your crane, helping to increase the lifespan of the crane and quickly address and correct operational errors. For example, following prescribed crane stoppage procedures can save on brake pad repair costs, which are an expensive replacement item when you are replacing them four to five times more often than you should be,” Naude said.
“Whether for a single crane or an entire fleet, the information and data on the yourKonecranes customer portal can be used to make a telling difference on the performance of your equipment and how it is managed. Having all your crane maintenance and usage information in one place makes it easier to manage your high-cost capital equipment.”
Naude said the yourKonecranes customer portal streamlines data access by organising large volumes of information – including inspection and maintenance findings, Truconnect data, asset lists and service spend – into easy-to-read graphs and charts in a single location.
“Each connected asset has its own Truconnect page where you can quickly see a summary of items that require attention, the most significant problem that could affect the safe operation of the crane and alerts. You can easily dive into more detailed information on crane condition, alerts and operating statistics. Insights can be drawn by observing anomalies, patterns and trends, helping you make informed maintenance decisions.”