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Collaborative platform for operations support of work systems - case of hydro power plants

A product-service system is introduced in the field of energy equipment. A new customer/oem business model will be developed. Modules for surveillance, monitoring and diagnostics, and a collaborative platform for supporting operations and maintenance will be introduced in hydro power plants.

Relations between customers and suppliers of industrial goods (original equipment manufacturers - OEM) are still predominantly based on a traditional buy/sell relationship. This relationship is perhaps adequate for more simple products but cannot be tolerable anymore for complex products such as production equipment. The role of the production equipment, which is integrated into a customer's work system, is to produce and thus to generate new value for the customer. Operation and maintenance of such high-tech and complex equipment require specialised knowledge and skills, which are, especially at the beginning of exploitation, usually not adequately possessed by the customer. The buy-sell relationship is concentrated on acquisition/delivery of equipment. It does not offer sufficient operational and maintenance support and therefore cannot create optimal results either for the customer or for the OEM due to suboptimal utilisation and operational performance of the equipment in terms of reduced output, higher costs, quality problems, frequent breakdowns, inadequate equipment availability, etc. This problem is later reflected in customer's dissatisfaction, tensions between the customer and OEM, and, consequently, a decrease of competitiveness of both parties. Due to the mentioned problems, the customer/OEM relationship should be transformed from the traditional buy/sell into a new one, based on a lasting partnership among both parties, i.e. a customer and OEM, and focused on equipment utilisation by providing products and related services during the entire life cycle of a production work system. It is expected that due to synergetic effects of collaboration better equipment utilisation could be achieved and thus additional value could be gained and shared between partners. Besides, it is expected that the new relationship will represent a competitive advantage for both. The major aim of the project is to research the issue of relationships between customers and suppliers of production equipment and to develop a new business model of this customer/supplier partnership and adequate services related to support of equipment operations and maintenance, which would significantly improve the equipment utilisation and contribute to competitiveness of the customer and OEM. In order to realise this aim, an appropriate infrastructure in terms of a web-based information system and a collaborative platform have to be developed. The technical objectives are related to higher equipment utilisation and thus generation of new value beyond the current state-of-the-art. This will be achieved by: (1) extension of the current SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) systems to web-based equipment monitoring systems providing visibility of equipment operations, performance, malfunctions, etc. to all stakeholders (customer, OEM, suppliers, service providers), (2) a diagnostic system for fast and accurate diagnostics of malfunctions and problem causes, (3) the responsive provision of services (advice, spare parts, maintenance), and (4) a platform for collaboration and working in virtual teams. The proposed technological solutions are advanced and are based on contemporary information and communication technologies. Within the project, the following R&D issues will be addressed: * Development of the customer/supplier partnership business model; * Development of an on-line system for surveillance and monitoring of equipment operations; * Development of a diagnostics and decision support system; * Development of a condition based maintenance system; * Development of a collaborative platform. The results of R&D will be implemented and evaluated on the energy equipment of a selected hydro power plant (water turbine/generator).
Acronym: 
COMOS
Project ID: 
5 343
Start date: 
01-01-2010
Project Duration: 
36months
Project costs: 
1 000 000.00€
Technological Area: 
OTHER INDUSTRIAL TECHNOLOGIES
Market Area: 
Other industrial equipment and machinery

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.