A major issue in companies that use bulk solids conveying equipment is addressing and preventing capacity losses. In a perfect world, equipment would operate with zero breakdowns, zero unplanned downtime, and zero failures, with no loss of efficiency or productive capacity. Reality, though, is different – these losses do happen and much management, operator and maintenance time is spent dealing with the consequences.
Total Productive Maintenance (TPM), a Lean manufacturing philosophy aimed at eliminating production deficits due to equipment losses, identifies six common types of equipment losses:
The first two losses represent equipment availability losses, meaning that the equipment is not always running during the planned production time. The next two losses are a performance loss, meaning that the equipment is not running at the designed or planned rate. The final two losses represent quality losses, meaning that when the equipment is running, it is not always producing good product.
By identifying and attacking the causes of the six big equipment losses, facilities using bulk solids handling equipment can greatly improve productivity and capacity. Even an introductory TPM program can make a significant impact on the six big losses through team-based continuous improvement initiatives such as autonomous and preventive maintenance activities, standardized work, and problem solving.
While TPM activities can greatly improve equipment functioning and productivity, a factor that should not be overlooked is equipment design. Equipment that is well-designed and built is inherently more reliable, durable and capable of producing quality output. Such equipment is less prone to unplanned downtime, requires less setup and adjustment to become productive, and produces quality output at the designed run rate.
Consider how UniTrak designs and builds its bulk solids conveying equipment to reduce the six big losses:
For almost 50 years, UniTrak has been supplying the finest in bulk solids conveying equipment, including TipTrak™ bucket elevators, Powderflight aeromechanical conveyors, UniFlex flexible screw conveyors, KleanTrak sanitary conveyors, and Bagstander bulk bag dischargers and fillers. To find out more about our equipment can help you avoid the six big losses that reduce capacity and productivity, please contact our sales team.