IIoT Monitoring for Packaging Machine Efficiency and Reliability

by , | Nov 2, 2020 | Fluid Control & Pneumatics, Packaging


In the hybrid and discrete manufacturing industries, pneumatic power drives the packaging machines in the operations. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) has enabled more continuous monitoring to improve energy efficiency & reliability and reduce maintenance costs.

In a Hydraulics & Pneumatics article, Why Using IIoT for Pneumatics is Simple, Yet Critical, Emerson’s Chris Noble and Motion Industries’ Justin Lesley share ways packaging machine performance is improved.

When pursuing the addition of IIoT sensors to incorporate, there are important questions to ask:

  • Will sensor data be transmitted wirelessly?
  • Will data be visualized on a local HMI or with a mobile app?
  • Will it feed into a locally hosted or cloud-based database?
  • Will it be saved and formatted for future analysis in combination with supplementary data?s
  • Will there be a requirement for new data to be compatible with existing software platforms?
  • Is there an existing data analytics strategy or will one need to be created?
  • Will data from multiple machines be aggregated?
  • Will data from multiple plants need to be viewed remotely by management or a corporate official?

Chris and Justin describe measurements to optimize energy efficiency.

After consulting with solution providers, you may find that there are opportunities to enhance your results by also tracking performance of key components and overall machine health to maximize the useful life. This implies the need for continuous monitoring of air usage and performance/health parameters as opposed to a one-time, audit-style measurement/assessment.

They share an example of IIoT sensors monitoring machine health used on a bulk palletizer.

Capturing the necessary data for this application requires cylinder velocity sensors and mechanical cushioning wear sensors for lifecycle management, pressure sensors, vibration sensors and leak detection devices (such as air supply and consumption sensors). In this scenario, data from the network of sensors is analyzed by software running on an edge computer and insights are stored in an existing platform or data historian for machine learning purposes.

Sensors include an AF2-Flow/Pressure Sensor, ST4-Cylinder Velocity Sensor with IO-Link, PE5-Vacuum/Pressure Sensors with IO-Link, AMS Wireless Vibration Sensor, AF Series Flow/Pressure Main Supply Filter/Regulator, and G3 Valve Manifold with I/O Link Master.

Edge-based, palletizer health monitoring

Read the article for more on ways to get your projects approved and on ways to ensure the best possible project and operational outcomes.

Visit the Packaging and Fluid Control & Pneumatics sections on Emerson.com to learn more about the IIoT continuous monitoring technologies to improve energy efficiency & reliability and reduce maintenance costs. You can also connect and interact with other pneumatics experts in the Fluid Control & Pneumatics group in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.

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Featured Expert

  • Chris Noble
    Business Development Manager, Food / Beverage / Packaging

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The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the authors. Content published here is not read or approved by Emerson before it is posted and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Emerson.

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