Ledent is a Belgian family-run business that specializes in the manufacturing and supply of rope and string for various applications. Manufacturing of high-quality ropes is done in the production facility in Hamme, which contains a specialist fleet of equipment for the manufacturing of rope products, including:
– a twisting installation for the manufacture of cotton, rayon and bcf rope
– precision winders for the production of reels
– bobbin-winding machines for the production of reels, spools and bobbins
– a fully automatic hank winding machine for the production of hanks
– cutting machines for cutting rope to size
– packaging lines with shrink-wrap machines and groupage
The production machines are often bought from different vendors, use different communication protocols and have different interfaces. This makes it difficult for the operational team to follow-up on the different steps in the production process, or to make optimizations to increase the Overall Equipment Effectiveness of the production lines. Inimco has implemented a smart solution for Ledent, starting from analysis of the business and technical requirements up to the implementation and support of the overall solution.
The phased approach consisted of :
Phase 1 : connecting industrial assets
Inimco made an analysis of the different production machines. Some machines already had integrated sensors, whereas external sensors were added on other machines. The data generated by the sensors is collected in a central database (IoT Hub), running on Microsoft Azure.
Phase 2 : Basic reporting and Integration with SAP
Production management is performed in the ERP system of Ledent, which is SAP. Inimco integrated the data from SAP, and developed an interface for the operators. This allows
(a) the people managing the different machines to easily have access to the required information;
(b) the operational responsible to have a central view on the status of the different production steps;
Follow-up can be done via a PowerApp based application, which is available on all devices (laptops, desktops but also mobile devices).
Phase 3 : Monitoring and Smart Alarming
The central data is analyzed in a continuous manner; if the algorithms detect that the output of one of the production machines deviates outside of predefined boundaries, there will be an automatic alert to the operator of the production line in question, but also to the operational responsible.
“This project has allowed us to gain a better real-time view of our production environment, and to increase the OEE of our plant”, commented Silvie Goeminne, COO of Ledent. “Furthermore, the solution built by Inimco provide us the building blocks for the digital transformation of our company”.