Spanish based company EWK designs and manufactures cooling towers, evaporative condensers and adiabatic equipment, designed to obtain the highest energy efficiency. Over the years the company has produced and installed tens of thousands of cooling towers across the globe.
One of the most frequent challenges for owners of cooling towers is when the system fails, it stops without any warning. Many of EWK’s clients operate 24/7 production facilities and in the event that the system fails, the temperature of this critical process is no longer controlled and stops.
This leads to customer dissatisfaction and financial loss due to the stoppage of the production process. Further costs to repair the equipment, as well as penalties from the authorities, may also be incurred. Before this solution was implemented, if a service maintenance contract was not in place, EWK and its service partner had no means of knowing the precise status of its installed equipment until it broke down.
EWK developed Smart Care, which enables cooling tower owners and manufacturers to monitor the equipment performance remotely. This allows for the early detection of faulty hardware and in turn the provision of timely service. Through the user-friendly dashboard, the manufacturer can also learn more about the system, stay updated on its performance and in turn provide a highly reliable platform to its customers.
Advantech’s Smart Edge box “ECU-& EdgeLink” is easily installed to an electrical connection in the Smart Control Cabinet on the cooling tower, a Modbus TCP. The ECU transmits the Modbus TCP data over the telco network to the Ericsson Cloud IoT Accelerator.
The software converts that data from any control system such as data conversion – protocol conversion event handling and logging data which is then translated into user-friendly information that is broadcast on the SmartLog AKURU dashboard. The solution can connect to almost any industrial hardware device and cloud-based platform. In this case, EWK now has instant feedback on the health and performance of each of its towers.
EWK’s customers can expect a significant uptime on each installed cooling tower with unplanned maintenance activities kept to a minimum. This also eliminates the need for twice yearly service calls.
“[We can] prevent unplanned maintenance through condition monitoring and transform data into information,” says uptime-engineer Lise Vandeborne of Smartlog.
There are additional advantages for EWK, including a lower cost per service call, the creation of a new for-fee service, and a deeper understanding of their own products in real-life operation.