Unplanned downtime is a key pain point for manufacturers, with recent studies indicating that it costs industrial manufacturers an estimated US$50 billion each year.
PARC, a Xerox company, has launched a new venture called Novity to commercialise predictive maintenance (PdM) technology that reduces unplanned downtime in industrial manufacturing operations.
“Over the course of many conversations with customers in the industrial manufacturing industry, we identified critical problems where current solutions fall short: they require too much data, they aren’t accurate enough, and they don’t give users enough advance notice to act before it’s too late,” said Novity general manager Markus Larsson. “Our goal with this solution is to solve these problems, ultimately enabling zero unplanned downtime.”
The Novity solution is an Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technology that uses equipment sensors and proprietary algorithms to enable industrial manufacturers to see the future health of their production assets. The Novity TruPrognostics engine relies on a combination of machine learning and physics-based models of equipment. This allows Novity to predict equipment failures with 90% or better accuracy and lead times of months, not weeks or days.
Pennsy Supply, the leading manufacturer of aggregate, sand, asphalt, and concrete throughout the North and Central Regions of Pennsylvania, has installed a pilot deployment of the Novity technology and is already seeing benefits.
“Novity’s solution has proven itself effective very quickly. Novity has delivered an excellent PdM solution for Pennsy,” said Larry Kessler, director of operation support, Pennsy Supply. “Within the first month, the system picked up a potential issue with a mill, allowing us to take preventative action, avoiding costly unplanned downtime.”
In addition to increasing the accuracy and prediction horizons of the solution, Novity’s TruPrognostics engine also reduces the need for large amounts of data to deliver results. By leveraging a library of pre-built physics-based models, predictive maintenance is accessible to customers who lack the historical data required by other solutions.
“As more manufacturers embrace new technologies that help their plants and factories run more efficiently, one of the things we’ve heard over and over from customers is they need a solution they can rely on to make actionable decisions,” said PARC president Naresh Shanker. “With Novity, we’re leveraging PARC’s expertise in AI, sensors and manufacturing to provide an exceptionally accurate predictive maintenance solution. This means less downtime, more productivity and profitability for our customers.”
Novity is the latest offering in PARC’s broad entry into the industrial IoT market. In 2021, Xerox announced the launch of Eloque, a joint venture with the Victorian Government (AU) to commercialize new technology that will remotely monitor the structural health of bridges and other critical infrastructure. Last year, Xerox also announced that PARC is working with the United States’ Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to develop a technology that can enable large-scale monitoring of seas under the Ocean of Things program.