25 Jul 2024


Plug-and-play system simplifies condition monitoring

Sick’s Monitoring Box can help to make industrial maintenance more effective

Sick has launched a simple plug-and-play system for condition monitoring and preventative maintenance of sensors, machines, processes and plants. Called the Monitoring Box, it can show live status or historical analyses, helping to improve operating efficiencies and make maintenance more effective.

The system allows industrial users to digitalise their processes. Using pre-configured apps that run on a variety of Sick sensors, the box monitors data via a browser-based dashboard on PCs or mobile devices. Data is processed by IoT gateways that allow it to be stored locally on a user’s premises, or on Sick’s cloud service via a secure connection.

Neil Sandhu, Sick’s UK product manager for measurement and systems, says the system is “so simple and adaptable that the opportunities for condition monitoring are limited only by your imagination.

“Bolt on the Sick Monitoring Box and transparent information about the health of your machines is just a few short steps away,” he adds. “Depending on your requirements, information such as operating hours, wear, temperature, energy usage or level of contamination, turns into a valuable resource.

“As a result,” Sandhu continues, “your machines and systems become more available and efficient. Unplanned maintenance time is reduced and operating staff can be deployed more efficiently to respond to any issues that occur. You will extend the operating life of machines through a better understanding of historical trends and patterns.”

To implement the system, a gateway is first installed and activated. Devices are then connected to it and data transmission starts. If you require, Sick can supervise the monitoring not only of its own sensors, but also of third-party devices.

Users can log in and can view all of their devices via Sick’s AssetBrowser software, search by device status using its AssetFilter tool, or view incidents and graphical representations to identify historical patterns and trends. Other tools provide records of alarms and notifications. Email alerts can notify operators when, for example, values go above or below pre-determined limits.

Extra sensors can be integrated with the Monitoring Box without needing any programming expertise. Once installed, sensors and machines can be monitored remotely, and operating and process parameters can be visualised.

Sick can supply the IoT gateways for network-capable sensors and machines to provide encrypted transmission of data, either to local or remote data storage, using a secure server located in Germany. If you are using the company’s cloud service, an encrypted connection is made between the Sick TDC-E gateway and the cloud. This connection is audited in accordance with IEC 62443-4-2 (SL2).

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