Digitization offers the opportunity to speed up maintenance processes and to overhaul components in such a way that they run more efficiently and for longer. At the Werner-von-Siemens Centre for Industry and Science, Siemens Energy, CONTACT Software and other partners are working on powerful applications for plant engineering and its customers. In the Maintenance, Repair, Overhaul (MRO) project, new measurement methods and materials are being developed, as well as product and process innovations for the service business.
With the help of Digital Twins, the researchers are building individual MRO process chains in which the value-added steps are predefined. To this end, data from various IT systems are linked to provide service engineers with the best possible support in their work and to supply production facilities with the necessary information. Additive manufacturing methods are used to exploit new designs and materials in the maintenance of turbine blades, thus equipping them with improved properties.
The Digital Twin is used in a variety of ways depending on the process step. When inspecting a component, it serves as a repository for 3D geometries collected by 3D scanning. AI-supported damage analyses use these 3D models and further measurements on the component to assist service engineers in finding the optimal repair measures. Simulation models stored in the Digital Twin help to design the coating processes according to the requirements.
Once the basic preliminary work has been completed, a test environment based on CONTACT Elements for IoT will be set up. Here, the partners evaluate the functionality of the Digital Twins with regard to the different use cases in the MRO process chain and the desired project results. Their goals: to increase productivity in the MRO processes, to avoid downtime, and to enable components upgrades during repairs. After recommissioning, the optimized components can increase the efficiency of a machine or plant, extend maintenance intervals or even lead to lower emissions.
Siemens Energy (coordination), four other industrial partners, the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing, institutes of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and the Technical University of Berlin