Agrati AEE and Gefond talk about this collaboration

How did the collaboration between Agrati AEE and Gefond come about?

Giorgio Colombo, CEO Agrati AEE: “Agrati AEE’s technical choices have always been oriented towards a process control that guarantees stable and quality-assured production. We have therefore found ourselves with increasingly complex machines that generate a lot of useful data for the customer, hence the logical thought was, why not use this large amount of data to give additional value to our customers? Working with Agrati AEE Chooses Predictive Maintenance with PERPETUO a Project of Gefond for a Long Life Industry Gefond to install Perpetuo on our products is the right answer for us. Give value to data and make them vectors for improvement. “ TizianaTronci, Board Member & New Products Development Gefond: “Gefond’s neutral position in the market and careful management of data privacy have enabled us to build important technical and commercial partnerships with manufacturers of diecasting machines and peripherals. With Perpetuo software we are demonstrating that today the difference in competitiveness is made by enhancing the predictive power of data. Perpetuo is an open system, a tailor-made product, a solution that fits every plant perfectly. The results achieved so far with Perpetuo on Agrati AEE machines prompted Agrati AEE management to present this collaboration at Euroguss 2022, effectively proposing Perpetuo as an integrated element of their presses.”

Agrati AEE installa PERPETUO

Why choose predictive maintenance with Perpetuo?

Simone Viscardi, Agrati AEE Project Manager for Perpetuo: “We believe that applying a data collection system, supported by Machine Learning algorithms, can guarantee our customers the achievement of previously unattainable goals. Traditional maintenance strategies used so far ensure good reliability of our machines, but good does not mean excellent. The challenges, in terms of productivity and reliability, expected by companies that choose Agrati AEE for their machines require a more effective response that gives more guarantees. Perpetuo fits our production needs perfectly: it was created to follow the specific needs of customers, to follow the real problems of machines in production. The analytical approach to problems convinced and guided us in choosing Gefond as a partner and Perpetuo as a tool.”

Luca Metelli, Gefond Technology Development Manager and Process Technologist: “The Perpetuo project was born strongly dropped into the production reality of aluminum alloy diecasting companies, because it derives from Gefond’s specific expertise of the machines under constant analysis. The collaboration with Agrati AEE is therefore both a challenge and an opportunity for us. A challenge because we have been able to demonstrate the possibility of applying Perpetuo on different machines as well: the production of Agrati AEE hot-chamber presses with the CM09, CM20, CM50, CM80, CM135, CM200, CM280, CM400 models have been connected to the system after an in-depth study of the structural and operating characteristics, carried out with the competent support of the company’s technical structure. And it is at the same time an opportunity because it puts us in contact with a leading hot chamber machine manufacturer, which opens up the possibility of new markets in which to expand and refine the Perpetuo system.”

What problems have you solved thanks to Perpetuo?

Simone Viscardi, Agrati AEE: “One of the difficulties associated with the hot-chamber diecasting process is to maintain constant injection parameters. The presence of sensors that monitor the pressure on the nitrogen and oil side of the accumulator, and the two chambers of the injection cylinder, allow us to constantly monitor the efficiency of the accumulator and the injection cylinder. We could thus give valuable insights into the wear condition of hydraulic seals and gaskets, of the injection block. Another area of application of Perpetuo, is to ensure the efficiency of the injection system, with feedback control of proportional injection valves. Through the complexity of the valves, and the very data provided by them, we can evaluate the response time of the valves, and understand through comparing the test data of the valves, the status in real time. The efficiency of a die-casting machine is linked to the excellent state of its hydraulic system, and the sensors on the Agrati AEE presses make it possible to: assess the state of the motor/pump assembly (bearings, pump), constantly monitor oil temperature (micro leaks and overheating) and hydraulic circuit pressure (leaks or leaks of hydraulic assemblies). Ensuring the efficiency of hydraulics is essential to maintain the quality of parts and the profitability of our presses.”

Why is it important for manufacturers to rely on Perpetuo’s predictive maintenance?

Luca Metelli, Gefond: “More and more manufacturers are showing interest in predictive maintenance, because they have realized that by getting into the Perpetuo system they can optimize service to their customers and know more about the operation of their plants.”

Simone Viscardi, Agrati AEE: “Perpetuo applied to Agrati AEE die-casting machines, allows monitoring of some essential parameters throughout the day, so it is possible to plan in time interventions that could compromise production performance leading to costly downtime. Predictive maintenance also allows monitoring of the mechanical parts to be replaced so that based on wear and tear, an order for spare parts can be filled in a timely manner avoiding stoppages due to lack of material. A major problem in the past year. Also from Agrati AEE’s point of view, the implementation of the software is important because it allows us to offer a comprehensive service to guarantee to our customers a more stable production.”

Industry 4.0 has already been at the heart of Italy’s and the world’s economic transformation for a few years now.

In 2016, an ad hoc government plan was launched in Italy, which was subsequently subject to revisions and amendments. We went from Piano Industria 4.0 to Piano Impresa 4.0 and finally to Piano Nazionale della Transizione 4.0.

These innovations proved to be essential in order to counter the crisis generated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The concept of Industry 4.0 and its 4 lines of development

Industry 4.0 is a process that stems from the Fourth Industrial Revolution and expresses a vision of the future according to which, thanks to the implementation of digital technologies, companies will increase their efficiency and competitiveness through the interconnection and cooperation of their resources, both internal to the factory and external, distributed along the value chain.

The new digital technologies will have a profound impact within 4 development directions:

Industry 4.0 in Italy

As anticipated, in 2016 the Italian government included in the 2017 Budget Law a plan for Industry 4.0 with a mobilisation of more than €10 billion, enabling the start of the transition to the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The plan includes a few points of interest:

Industry 4.0 in the world

In Europe, Germany is a leader in the transition to the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the approach to Industry 4.0. In fact, it represents a forerunner, as it has already been taking a special interest in the development of this sector for several years.

Planned approaches have also been undertaken in Italy, as mentioned above, and in France, while Great Britain, without any major political stance on the subject, risks falling behind the other European countries.

In the United States, on the other hand, the process is being favoured in a different way to European techniques and strategies, but it is still undoubtedly supported with a view to ensuring greater productivity by reducing the impact of costs.

The effects of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on the labour market

Various experts are trying to understand what changes the world of work will undergo and what new jobs will be in demand.

What we do know is that 2 million new jobs will be created, but at the same time 7 million will disappear. Italy comes out with a draw, better than countries like France and Germany.

The losses will be concentrated in the administrative and production areas, offset by finance, management, IT and engineering.

The skills and abilities required will change accordingly: problem solving will remain the most sought-after soft skill, while critical thinking and creativity will start to gain in importance.

A rapidly changing scenario

According to the Scientific Director of the Digital Innovation Observatories of the Politecnico di Milano, Alessandro Perego, precisely because it is a rapidly evolving scenario, it is necessary to evolve in order to reap all the benefits.

“Our country, however, must know how to fully grasp the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, implementing systemic initiatives for the development of Smart Manufacturing and providing workers with the digital skills for the tasks of the future”.

Reaping all the benefits of 4.0, Agrati AEE can suggest solutions for your company with low environmental impact and above-standard energy savings.