Being aware of the next upcoming service interval, contacting a service technician in a hurry – the Zeppelin Systems Smart Components app represents a big step towards digitizing system components.
Digitization and Industry 4.0 are currently the subjects of much discussion, but the really crucial issue is ensuring that the customer derives real benefit from these concepts. “Our new Smart Components app helps users by making their daily work significantly easier,” notes Dietmar Dieing, who is responsible for new product development at Zeppelin.
The new app actively supports maintenance fitters and service technicians by automatically identifying components and providing specific information on mobile devices. “For example, very few users can tell you there and then when a valve was installed, let alone give you any details regarding performance data or previous repairs. Though there are type plates in place, these can be difficult to read in very harsh ambient conditions and anyway they do not provide the right information to the level of detail required,” explains Dieing.
By contrast, the Smart Components app delivers accurate information on specifications, spare parts lists, commissioning instructions, operations, maintenance and service intervals. The app also features a Service Chat feature, which can be used to communicate with an expert in real time, as well as to transfer images or videos so that Zeppelin experts worldwide can offer rapid assistance when needed.
Easy when you know where!
It is very simple to use: As soon as the app is opened, all Zeppelin components in the environment are displayed, allowing the user to quickly identify where a component was installed if this information has not been precisely documented; the user is then intuitively guided through the menu. One significant advantage that the app has over the type plate is that information is not only available to be read, but can also be supplemented or amended. “This means that the app can be used to create digital checklists and maintenance records as well as for planning maintenance appointments. At the same time, it allows for transparent, paperless documentation throughout the entire operating life of the component,” Dieing clarifies.
The app is not just for new products: As of the second quarter of 2017, all Zeppelin components have been equipped with this feature as standard. Older components such as rotary feeders in difficult environments can also be easily retrofitted with the app. Zeppelin customers can enjoy the benefits of the new application without any additional costs other than those associated with the service appointment itself.
However, the app, which was unveiled at the K trade fair in Düsseldorf, is just the first step on the road to digitization in the plastics industry. A number of other concepts connected with Industry 4.0 will come to market as early as 2017. “These include such concepts as fully automatic integration into control systems,” Dieing concludes.