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Martin Engineering introduces data tracking with QR codes

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World Fertilizer,

Martin Engineering has released a statement claiming that it has introduced data tracking with QR codes on its belt cleaners and other components.

The company claims that customers benefit from regularly scheduled inspections by factory trained and MSHA certified technicians, providing operators with easy access to data on the application, operating environment, service life and condition of conveyor components, updated on each belt cleaner maintenance visit.

The company claims that its proprietary smart phone app provides technicians and customers with a tool that helps to maximise performance and service life (whilst minimising carryback and spillage) to improve safety and decrease any unplanned downtime.

The tracking programme is currently being used in selected markets around the world. The tool captures a range of information in order to create a detailed record on all components. Date codes are imprinted onto the blades during the manufacturing stage, which is particularly important for urethane because it has a limited shelf life. In addition to this, technicians also fit tags onto existing equipment in order start monitoring condition and recording observations.

Conceived as part of Martin’s factory-direct ‘Mr. Blade’ programme, technicians regularly carry out inspections and adjustments, with an 18-point operational assessment from head pulley to tail pulley and a report for each visit. The visual inspections include the condition of pulleys, belts and idlers, as well as belt tracking, sealing, support and containment. This ensures the safety, efficiency and reliability of the conveyor systems, decreasing the risk of hazards or unscheduled outages.

Chris Schmelzer, Director of the Wear Components Business Group for Martin Engineering, said: “Periodic reviews often reveal developing problems before they become a failure, such as worn idlers, leaking seals or excessive spillage.

“The data tracking program will help us work with our customers to make better-informed decisions about what equipment to use in specific applications, more accurately predicting the expected wear life.

“The goal is to help ensure that all components are properly serviced and replaced during scheduled outages, before a major breakdown occurs and stops production.”

Using the tagging and capture ability, users can record and analyse component data in much greater detail. Each inspection made by a technician will be logged in, along with operational factors, such as the material being handled, conveyor speed and remaining wear life, as well as visual observations and other information. Martin says that the overall aim is to ensure more effective control of bulk material, improving predictive maintenance scheduling and contributing to a lower total cost of ownership.

The tagging programme enables the company to maintain detailed information about the product’s manufacture date, installation and service history, providing users with access to the data through the use of a smart phone or other device.

Schmelzer added: “Eventually we will have enough data points to make more accurate predictions about the performance and wear life of individual blade designs and materials of construction under specific operating conditions.

“Defining average wear life is extremely difficult because of the number of variables, but having this information will allow us to compare blade performance in similar applications and come up with a range and standard deviation.”

The new programme developed by Martin is believed to be the first of its kind for conveyor components. In the statement, the company claims that it already has plans to expand the asset tagging programme to its air cannons and other equipment over time.

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