By harnessing the power of the internet, Saurer empowers its customers through a range of digitalised innovations, including the Senses mill management system, Secos – Saurer Customer Portal, Saurer Academy and remote service.
As Saurer has transformed itself from a machine provider to a solution provider for customers along the entire textile value chain, interconnectivity and digitalisation have become vital.
Since digital solutions are accessible remotely, Saurer customers are no longer limited by distance and also save time. Whether they need to order an original part, optimise the processes within their machines or have a machine serviced, customers can access the most relevant information pertaining to Saurer products as the information updates and without waiting for an external party to visit their mills.
An early start into digitalisation
Saurer started early into digitalisation of its spinning machinery. 10 years ago, Saurer launched the revolutionary Autocoro 8 that already offered the digitalised option DigiPiecing and DigiWinding. Today, Saurer is looking back at over 1 million supplied spinning positions of Autocoro 8/9/10. The customers benefit from the single-spindle technology, unprecedented productivity due to intelligent automation and digitalization. The latest version, Autocoro 10, is a secure platform for Industry 4.0 in the rotor spinning mill.
On the ring spinning side Saurer offers digitalised features like Optispeed. Together with the ISM (individual spindle monitoring) Optispeed is a function for self- optimisation of the spindle speed depending on the yarn break rate. The operator can set the limits for yarn breaks per 1000 spindle hours. Optispeed automatically raises or lowers the spindle speed, optimizing productivity.
Digitalisation and Automation
The Saurer Robot AGV is designed for the ergonomic handling and transportation of cylindrical or conical cross-wound packages. It picks up the packages from a pallet, buggy, trolley or from the conveyor belt of the machine and stores them in its internal buffer system. Due to the modern laser navigation system, the Saurer Robot AGV moves fully automatically and autonomously through your mill. It detects obstacles in its path independently and drives around them or stops if the minimum safety distance is not maintained.
Senses mill management system integrates all machines into one system
Saurer consolidates all digital information in Senses and has ensured that this mill management system can be integrated seamlessly into spinning plants. Senses enables customers to connect all their Saurer machines and allows third-party machines – all in one system.
With Senses, customers can carry out various analyses to control the productivity and quality within their mills remotely using any mobile device. With the customisable Senses cockpit, customers can focus on the key data that is relevant to them. The system also provides the user with relevant key information, helping them to solve problems quickly and efficiently e.g., that a spinning position is not performing optimally due to the number of yarn breaks.
The efficiency of an entire machine is based on the cumulated efficiency of each spinning position. In order to increase machine efficiency, Senses’ off-standard function pinpoints single positions with low efficiency by monitoring all machines after every shift change.
It then visualises all outliner positions, allowing the customer to implement countermeasures. With this function, the customer is able to increase the overall efficiency by 2−3%.
The mill management system’s basic functionality can be extended with Senses Elements, which can be seamlessly integrated into all processes.
These are additional features to increase functionality for key areas. Each Element focuses on a specific area: for example, the Senses Element Maintenance digitalises, structures and simplifies all maintenance processes to increase productivity. Senses Workforce digitalises personnel management and improves the efficiency of staff. With Senses Element Shop Floor, customers can optimise their increases productivity by optimising operator guidance, shortening the distances they need to walk in the plant. Senses Recipe enables customers to monitor and adjust the settings of their machines.
Secos assistance functions – saving time in day-to-day business
The Secos – Saurer Customer Portal is more than just an e-shop for Saurer original parts. With the updated version of the portal, it is easier for customers to find original parts – with photo uploads, customers can quickly identify the required original part they need. In the user’s Secos account, all machine-related manuals and technical documentation for their machines are saved for quick reference in case of questions on operation and maintenance. Like Senses, Secos can be accessed anytime, from any mobile device.
Saurer Academy – turning employees into experts
This platform offers a wide range of training and further education courses for machine operators. Customers can book classroom and live web-based training courses. In addition, the Saurer Academy offers e-learning courses with multimedia, audio-visual training material that explain complex issues and processes in a clear and easy-to-understand manner.
Course contents include training on the function, operation and maintenance of Saurer machines and their assemblies. Web-based trainings (WBTs), recorded webinars and learning cards give employees the flexibility to decide for themselves when, where and at what pace they want to learn. Knowledge tests with certificates allow workers to keep track of their progress and review the work.
In 2021, during training sessions with a South African customer, the Saurer Academy team also arranged for specialists from various Saurer departments to join the class during the live virtual training sessions, to answer specific questions the customer’s employees had. After each training session, Q&A rounds were held to address specific issues that the attendees may encounter, along with solutions. This virtual offering has also proved particularly useful during the pandemic, when it was not possible for trainers to travel on-site.
Remote service – have our Twisting experts inside your machine in minutes
Saurer experts can access a fully digital read-out of the error log, which allows them to identify any issues immediately. They can also adjust machine control settings, update software and do diagnostics checks of any hardware defects as well as check CPU usage, energy consumption and machine temperature. This means getting the customer’s machine running at optimal capacity faster with less downtime. Using the Saurer remote service is also more affordable than calling out a technician.
This service is particularly beneficial to customers that are located in more remote areas. Again, such services have been invaluable during the past lockdown-prone years.
Illustrating how this works in practice, Saurer technicians were able to remotely detect two defective pieces of hardware and restore a customer’s recipe list in just two hours. On another occasion, our technical staff quickly and successfully solved a major machine breakdown in 30 minutes, avoiding an unnecessary and costly on- site intervention.
Digitalisation has revolutionised traditional services such as site visits, in-person training and machine troubleshooting. Even Secos goes beyond being an e-shop but is instead a knowledge base tailored to each user. Increasing digitalisation, combined with functions that enhance machine intelligence – such as Optispeed, DigiWinding and DigiPieicing in the case of Saurer – will boost interconnectivity, allowing machines within Saurer systems to communicate, further providing customers with added benefits in the mill.