With an increasing number of functions and the constant demand for even faster and more autonomous machine processes, the volume of generated data is increasing significantly. The challenge of digitization is therefore quite clear: make data available and use it intelligently to counteract the complexity of the future! Sounds simple? With the Analyze MyDrives Edge application, it is! The application is Siemens’ answer to the question of how drive data can be turned into valuable knowledge to ensure maximum productivity and flexibility for customers’ machines and plants.
But let’s take a step back — what exactly is the Analyze MyDrives Edge application and what problem does it solve?
If we take a look behind the scenes of autonomous manufacturing, it quickly becomes clear that a huge amount of data has to be produced and then analyzed. The problem here? This high mass of drive data is very difficult for the operator to comprehend and the evaluation of it without experts is enormously time-consuming. This is exactly the reason why the General Motion Control segment and the pre-development department of Factory Automation joined forces and went live with an application connected to MindSphere (an open operating system for the Internet-of-Things that connects systems, plants, machines and products in a cloud). The Analyze MyDrives Edge application offers a standardized and soon also universally applicable way to analyze all relevant drive components for a malfunction in just a few seconds. Not only is the final result displayed as an anomaly indicator, but all data of the entire drive train, including high-frequency sampled data in the inverter, from motors to condition monitoring systems, is collected and evaluated with low latency. This easy-to-configure and intelligent analysis makes it possible to better understand machine processes without adding additional sensors, to point out errors and to continuously optimize them. We have thus created an opportunity for our customers to sustainably meet the requirements of digitalization.
How can this work? With a shared spirit of innovation!
In keeping with the motto “Team work makes the dream work”, a final solution emerged from the initial idea. As representatives of Factory Automation and Motion Control, Dr. Matthias Loskyll and Dr. Michael Kaever brought their teams together and made the innovation possible. As drive and data experts, Dr. Michael Kaever and his team were able to combine the logical aspect of data acquisition with that of data analysis. In the next step they passed the ball to Dr. Matthias Loskyll and his team who contributed the expertise in the field of industrial artificial intelligence. But that was not all: thanks to our additional algorithms, a first prototype of data analysis for the Industrial Edge could be created. Existing use cases also made it possible for the Analyze MyDrives Edge application to be developed and continuously optimized together with customers at an early stage in the field of materials handling technology. In this way, we ensure that the needs of our customers are not neglected.
Necessity is the mother of invention and makes even more fun in a team!
One thing can be said with certainty: We all underestimated how big the challenge actually was. The generalization to arbitrary drive components was really keeping us awake a few nights and will certainly continue to play a major role in the foreseeable future. And who would have expected a global pandemic during the project — certainly no one! And so, the current situation has also cost the Analyze MyDrives Edge application quite a bit of time. The original test facility at the Fürth site was to move with Siemens Logistics to the former AEG site in Nuremberg — a move that took a little longer than expected. But hurdles are there to be overcome, and in the end, we didn’t let them tear us down and paved the way for the Analyze MyDrives Edge application together with our colleagues from the Motion Control department. And that’s why I am sure that we will continue to overcome any hurdles that arise in the future in close teamwork.
What comes next? Weeks full of optimism!
Michael Leipold, our Motion Control expert, fondly recalls a visit to a gearbox manufacturer. During a tour in the plant, an employee was able to tell him whether the gearbox under test was running correctly or not — just by testing it acoustically with his ears. This ability left an impression: “We want to offer the digital twin of the machine operator’s auditory canal,” Michael announces, pretty much summing up our goal for the next few weeks. In further collaboration, we therefore want to transform analytics into a product that is largely universally applicable for drive components. And the signs are good: the next major release is expected at the end of this calendar year! So, the joint journey with the Analyze MyDrives Edge application remains exciting…
You want to find out even more? 👉 Find more information on digitalization in drive technology and other edge applications here.