As part of GE Aviation's digital transformation journey at their Muskegon facilities, the team worked to shift preventive maintenance from schedule-based to condition or machine use-based to ensure best application of key resources. See how they developed a framework for continuous improvement by partnering with GE Digital to implement Asset Performance Management (APM) on its engine production lines.
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We manufacture high pressure turbine nozzles and shrouds. These products are used in the engine to provide the best fuel burn for the airlines, as well as durability so they can fly more hours. We have over 462 people that work here on three shifts. Over 800 people for our Muskegon sites. The Asset Performance Management solution has provided the digital framework for us to go after continuous improvement.
Once we receive the hardware, our servers were in. We had our APM solution up and running. Once that occurred, kind of off to the races creating, developing visuals, and, and queries, and policies.
The APM tool was the first and best tool that had policy builder that'll let us use logic and algorithms to do things with the machine data to generate specific actions from that.
Before we had APM, there were paper logs taped to the machines. Before you could even get them all input to a spreadsheet, there'd be more problems to log. APM gives us the ability to see what's happening on the floor when we're not around. It helps us a lot with troubleshooting.
We're basically collecting anything we can collect from the machine. The machine's statuses so we can look at machine utilization and performance. We're getting machine faults that tell us where our problems are and we're collecting sensor data that lets us look at pressures, temperatures, currents, voltages to troubleshooting and understanding root causes.
You just start with a broad picture. In a click, you're one step deeper. In another click, you're deeper, and you can dig right into specific problems. That's a lot of what we went through before with sorting and weeding out the stuff we didn't need. APM goes right to the source. It's just helped us fix things, rather than put bandaids on them.
Those lines are resources to where our problems are.
If we have unexpected delays, that's got a huge impact not only on our business, but our customer. The more data it can get, the more I understand it, the more I can predict my future and do predictive maintenance.
The best example I could think of would be related to a reduction in rework percentage on our leak program. That team has reduced rework percentages from 8 to 10% consistently, to less than 1% in the last few months. If we are going to service as a shop, we need to use more of our assets and we need to stabilize those assets.
We found here that the only way to get sustained year over year benefits is to couple lean manufacturing techniques with digital tools. If we don't do that, the speed at which change is happening, you'll be left in the dust and we need to maintain a competitive advantage and this is one way to do that.