With food and beverage manufacturers facing a new level of production challenges, SIG has developed Plant 360 Controller – a new digital monitoring and control solution to optimize every angle of filling plant operations.
Today’s filling plants are operating on an unprecedented scale with higher demands, growing competition, and ever-shorter production cycles. But with multiple systems running independently, an increasing number of data sources, and equipment from several different suppliers, these plants are becoming increasingly complex to manage.
SIG Plant 360 Controller is a modular solution that can be scaled to suit a manufacturer’s exact needs. It features open software that’s compatible with equipment and machinery from any supplier, meaning manufacturers have complete freedom of choice over their technology partners.
With SIG Plant 360 Controller, manufacturers can gradually integrate all horizontal plant processes and systems into one platform, while also adding more functionalities to grow vertically. This ensures they can gain a full overview of their entire production – from raw material reception to warehouse, and from shop floor to top floor.
Modules scaled to every operation
SIG Plant 360 Controller consists of three core modules: Connector, Performer and Governor. These ensure manufacturers have a scalable integrated information and control solution that can be customized to their specific operations.
The Connector module starts by ensuring full connectivity in a manufacturer’s plant, no matter what equipment, supplier or PLC is used. OPC Unified Architecture (OPC-UA) enables horizontal machine-to-machine and vertical communication, from shop floor to top floor, within the entire plant.
“It’s very important that it’s easy and fast to integrate the Connector because our customers’ lines and plants have to continually run,” said Stefan Mergel, SIG’s Senior Product Manager Equipment. “That’s why we do most of the groundwork at SIG so we can deliver a plug-and-play solution, which is integrated within the equipment, connected to the PLC and can go live within a day.”
The Performer module is a Plant Monitoring System (PMS) that offers a platform on which all connected equipment can share information. This creates a transparent database that monitors an entire plant in real time, analyzes historical data to find process bottlenecks and presents intelligent insights in visual dashboards. This helps improve plant efficiency (OEE) and quality, and, with digital reporting, achieve a paperless plant.
“Customization is very important to ensure our customers get what they need,” added Mergel. “With the Performer module, we have a basis module that covers all key functionalities but we also have a large toolbox where customers can choose the tools and modules they need related to issues such as performance, quality and energy. This ensures they always get what they need.”
The Governor module provides a Manufacturing Execution System (MES) that enables complete control of a plant, from top floor to shop floor. This means seamless communication between all layers of operations – from Enterprise-Resource-Planning (ERP) to individual machines and back. And, with modular solutions powered by digital workflows, such as material handling, operations planning, or batch track-and-trace, manufacturers can optimize all operations.
“Potential cost savings from the Governor module are obviously dependent on the customer but from our experience we have some proven key figures,” said Mergel. “We know you can improve OEE by an average of 5% while plant capacity can be improved by 10%. For a milk customer in Asia Pacific, SIG Plant 360 Controller is an end-to-end solution that enables yearly savings of over €1M.”
SIG Plant 360 Controller is one of several value-added solutions within SIG’s Smart Factory segment, which is designed to help manufacturers meet the challenge of increasing output and driving down costs in today’s competitive environment. The solution-driven Smart Factory platform delivers IoT-enabled systems and technical services that transform filling plants into connected factories securing the highest efficiency, flexibility and quality.