Scott Berg, CEO at ServiceMax, from GE Digital explains why for those organisations getting the results that matter, the Industrial Internet of Things alone isn’t enough to transform their service offering...
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Scott Berg, CEO at ServiceMax, from GE Digital explains why for those organisations getting the results that matter, the Industrial Internet of Things alone isn’t enough to transform their service offering...
Complex machines power the world’s largest industries, from offshore rigs to networks of medical devices, to massive wind turbines.
Over the last decade, we’ve seen everything from treadmills to coffee makers digitized in pursuit of smarter, better and faster machines to get better results. Industrial companies are adopting digital strategies and require a distinct understanding of connected machinery to do so successfully. It’s no surprise that these machines require thoughtful, technical and predictive maintenance.
Companies now more than ever are in the business of keeping machines running to ensure that the absolute most value is derived from each piece of equipmentCompanies now more than ever are in the business of keeping machines running to ensure that the absolute most value is derived from each piece of equipment. Our customers report, on average, a 19% increase in productivity since implementing Predix ServiceMax. That basically means that we can add an extra day to the technician’s week without working overtime.
ServiceMax from GE Digital is helping the world’s largest companies on their digital journey, starting with service delivery. What is fundamental to our understanding of Field Service Management (FSM) is the scale at which we provide service. We are meeting our customers at a global, enterprise level. As the industry adopts the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) we think about service in a big way and help companies on their digital journey.
We are 100% invested in making sure our customers are getting absolutely all the value they can from the equipment they have and how it’s being used.
Why IIoT won’t be enough to transform service
IIoT-enabled devices and data insights alone are not enough to paint a clear picture of service in the future. Talk of IIoT is everywhere, from budgets to yearly planning, to newspaper headlines. At the end of the day, data informs a procedural change within only one part of a machine at one point in time. Decisions are made on a limited set of inputs, whether that be wear and tear of a specific part, or work order history.
You might say that using IIoT alone is tunnel vision.
Meaningful service is going beyond IIoT, and Asset Performance Management (APM) is the catalyst: it opens up data to more contextual inputs from the broader ecosystem. APM harnesses the behaviour of the machine and goes beyond a simple exercise in efficiency.
It’s important to understand the key is not solely APM, FSM or IIoT. Rather, it’s all three working together to create a holistic solution.It’s important to understand the key is not solely APM, FSM or IIoT. Rather, it’s all three working together to create a holistic solution.
APM monitors the behaviour of the machine, and the FSM platform brings it all together to inform how, when, and why we choose to service or replace a machine. It monitors machine health directly after a repair, and cycles that information into future repairs, to close the loop of service.
The powerful combination of APM and FSM provides a complete view of a product and establishes lifecycle management strategies. The result is a service product management solution that has up-leveled a traditional connected device strategy, incorporating a business’s bottom line. This has saved our customers millions of dollars.
Digital industry brings dynamic results
Field service in the industrial era is more than a one-time project. Done well, it is an industrialists guide to a digital future, providing vital insights and outcomes for customers. The new era of field service will be marked by connectivity and share a fundamental goal of zero downtime for critical equipment.
There will be industrial behemoths and then there will be digital industrial behemoths.
Field service is evolving into a system that doesn’t forgetField service is evolving into a system that doesn’t forget: an APM-integrated platform incorporates past data to make decisions about parts, technicians, and compliance in the present. And then the magic happens: the system integrates several data factors based on the outcomes of similar work orders and controls for a business perspective: how much time and money can we afford to spend here? That data is translated to actionable insights for technicians on the ground, meaning they are not working towards a static goal of ‘machine repair.’ Instead, technicians are working towards a dynamic outcome: machine uptime.
We are reaching a point where FSM is simultaneously smarter than us yet utterly useless without the most vital component of service: humans. Technicians close the loop between data and predictions by recording the actions they take.
They have the training, the expertise, and the context for each work order with a FSM platform at their fingertips. And the result is that not only is complex machinery functioning smoothly, but FSM is providing the savvy digital industrialist an avenue to a more prosperous day on the job tomorrow.
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Firstly, in an industry that has been going through a spate of acquisitions over the last two years, the amount was quite simply eye-watering and just blew everything out of the water. Secondly, this was an acquisition that came right out of left field. Many analysts may have predicted that ServiceMax would eventually be acquired having been the industries biggest success story, but few would have suggested that an industrial force such as GE may have been the suitor that would become their new home. Kris Oldland, Editor-in-Chief, Field Service News, spoke exclusively to the senior players at both ServiceMax and GE Digital to find out how things are bedding in...
When the ServiceMax from GE Digital train rolled into Berlin towards the end of last year for the European leg of their series of Maximize conferences, there was an exciting mix of vivacious confidence between the ServiceMax team and keen curiosity and anticipation between the delegates - who were in the main ServiceMax customers.
Of course, this was to be expected - as it is at such events that ServiceMax have traditionally announced their latest developments and outlined how they had refined their roadmap. In past iterations of the conference, we've seen ServiceMax announce a number of industry firsts including the announcement in 2016 of Field Service Connect - which essentially established a blueprint for the role field service management systems will play in our sector adopting IoT that is being mirrored by a number of their peers.
And that's not to mention the little matter of GE Digital's acquisition of ServiceMax for an incredible $900Bn which was announced just days after 2016's Maximize Europe event in Amsterdam.
With just over a year having passed it was a perfect time to see how well embedded ServiceMax had become within the GE Digital machine, and just how much such significant investment had changed their vision for the future of both their organisation and of field service delivery itself.Indeed, with just over a year having passed it was a perfect time to see how well embedded ServiceMax had become within the GE Digital machine, and just how much such significant investment had changed their vision for the future of both their organisation and of field service delivery itself.
Having spent a lot of time with Yarnold and his senior team over the last few years, one thing that has always come to the fore was that there was an inherent understanding of what excellent service looked like, and the ServiceMax vision was always about trying to develop the tools to make meeting standards of service excellence that much easier.
I recall speaking to Yarnold in 2016 about the ethos of the company, and he explained then how they felt that most of the technology in the Field Service Management sector was geared towards taking cost out. What they realised very early on into their journey to becoming a leader within the industry was that there was a critical emerging trend - companies who were building products were experiencing much faster growth in the services side of the business than the product side.
We focussed on helping companies to grow their service business as opposed to squeezing their technicians for more productivity - which is still where most of the technology in our space is focussed"So we focussed on helping companies to grow their service business as opposed to squeezing their technicians for more productivity - which is still where most of the technology in our space is focussed" Yarnold had stated back then.
Of course, this approach has become widely embraced by most of ServiceMax's peers as solution providers realise that most companies now have at least one foot planted firmly in a service-centric world and as concepts such as servitization and outcome-based services go mainstream.
However, while there is no denying the prescience of Yarnold and his team's approach, until last year they were always just an observer of trends within the field service sector, only experiencing them indirectly via how they impacted their client base. But now as part of GE, an organisation that has something upward of 40,000 service engineers in various different divisions and across multiple sectors globally, they now have a direct line into a wealth of field service directors that are all on the same team.
I was curious as to what if any impact this would have on ServiceMax regarding how they position their worldview on what great field service looks like. In his opening address early that day Yarnold had touched upon shared learnings - so was it a case of their previous assertions being validated? Or was there an element of identifying essential details that could only be seen when one is embedded that little bit closer to the actual coalface?
"It is a bit of both" responds Yarnold. "We are part of GE Digital which has the Predix platform and then these application areas APM and ServiceMax, and we are separate from the rest of the GE business which are the industrial business units such as Oil and Gas, Power Generation and Healthcare and so on. Each of those business has their own field service operation, and each of those businesses is rolling out ServiceMax. So we're not part of the organisation, but we have the home team there to draw on."
To bring this message to life Yarnold recounts how before the acquisition Sharma, who at the time was the CIO of GE's Oil and Gas business had been a somewhat challenging customer, but once they were on the same side of the table the value that ServiceMax brought to the table was revealed to actually be hugely valued. "I do wish he'd maybe told me a bit sooner'' Yarnold said playfully which brought a warm laugh from Sharma - and in this brief exchange, the camaraderie and trust between the two were immediately brought to the fore, something usually found within relationships built on a mutual respect.
It's been a good balance so far, and we're just starting to tap into that knowledge of those industries and the vertical specific complexities of those industries. It keeps things fresh and challenging, but that's what we want. We want that challenge"So yes there was a lot of affirmation" Yarnold commented returning to the initial question. "Then where I think the learnings are coming in. As we start to work with these folks and we start to understand what their customers, the service, and maintenance organisations are all about - we need to ask how do we continue to evolve and build our product so that they fit those organisations. Utilities, Airlines, Railroads, Oil Companies - these have not necessarily been our direct customers to date and we're learning a lot about that. We're also learning a lot about metrics and measuring business. It's been a good balance so far, and we're just starting to tap into that knowledge of those industries and the vertical specific complexities of those industries. It keeps things fresh and challenging, but that's what we want. We want that challenge."
So would it be fair to assume that given this additional stream of insight there maybe a change to the roadmap that ServiceMax has outlined for themselves? Kasai picks up this point. "I think you outlined it well when you positioned it as an expansion" he replied when we tackle this topic.
"Both being part of the wider family of GE but also the massive investment is a much needed, as we really need to expand our portfolio into new markets and new capabilities. We'd always made a conscious effort not to go into many of these industries for a variety of reasons, but largely from a focus point of view. But now we have I believe, a solid competitive edge from a channel point of view with great customer relationships. We have an understanding of the domain within those industries, and it would have been tough just to walk in and grow that knowledge. Thirdly, we have the capital to go ahead and invest in the development of the products to actually develop those capabilities for these industries. It is a combination of these three things which essentially makes a brand new company - there is so much potential and that what we're all really excited about, where do we go next?"
It is interesting the Kasai mentions how the new environment in which they find themselves in is in many ways akin to being an entirely new company. It brings back recollections of another previous conversation with Yarnold the day the acquisition was announced. "It is not the start of a new chapter; it is the start of a whole new book" he had commented, which is a strong analogy, as this latest incarnation of ServiceMax is indeed a distinct creature than that which has come before. However, likely any great novel within a series, the fundamental aspects of what made it a best-seller in the first place must remain in place. To extend the metaphor to its very limits, there must be a familiarity and continuity in place if it is going to build on the successes of previous in the broader in the ongoing saga.
In other words, ServiceMax as part of GE Digital must build upon the strong foundations that are already in place. Yet, for such a substantial investment, they simply have to evolve as both Kasai and Yarnold suggested. However, it seems that this is something that is very much already starting to happen as the ServiceMax team becomes plugged into the broader world of GE.
Such cohesion and deep level insight will not only drive the functionality of ServiceMax forward hugely but by doing so will also raise the bar for the industry as a whole. As Sharma explains" Something we have done recently is to have seven business swarm ServiceMax from which we've then built a core centre of excellence capability - it is a very focused team, they have both deep domain expertise and have also been ServiceMax users for a very long time. From this, we have developed accelerators to help improve deliverability, but it has also become a great feedback loop to Rei and the product team."
It is this type of integration that many of the analysts within the industry (including myself), hoped to see emerge when the acquisition was announced. As such cohesion and deep level insight will not only drive the functionality of ServiceMax forward hugely but by doing so will also raise the bar for the industry as a whole.
It was undoubtedly one of the most interesting aspects of the acquisition that I discussed at the time in that there is vast potential for the further development of important solutions when a major player such as ServiceMax is embedded within an organisation that has such a fine-grained level of knowledge of delivering service, rather than being swallowed up by just another major software house that many would have expected.
Yet for the full value of this to be played out there has to be a true ebb and flow of dialogue between ServiceMax and the wider organisation - something which Sharma indicates clearly exists. "We attack things together, working with the platform team, ServiceMax and ourselves, on an integrated asset model of the future. We are talking about working within large-scale operations and exploring how do you augment and drive participation? It is a great way to valid test or experiment with a capability, and we give instant feedback."
We have the fortunate situation where we have a very large-scale service organisation as a captive audience, and we have an organisation that's capable of delivering these great capabilities to these organisations. "When you develop new products you have to be very iterative, you have to have a small set of customers to be constantly testing against so you that you eventually build a scalable product for the masses. If you look at these new capabilities, we are looking at it very much through that lens, and we have the fortunate situation where we have a very large-scale service organisation as a captive audience, and we have an organisation that's capable of delivering these great capabilities to these organisations."
Of course, the most visible return on GE's investment so far, certainly from a product perspective, would for most people in the industry be the close integration between ServiceMax's Connected Field Service suite and another of GE Digital's offerings, Asset Performance Management (APM). As we've covered previously in Field Service News, the combination of these two tools pushes us with far more certainty than ever before into the world of IoT based field service. So is this a clear indication of the direction that both GE and ServiceMax see as the future of field service delivery?
"I think what the move to predictive really does is that it puts everything on your terms," comments Yarnold. "You're planning ahead of time; you can predict who is going to go where with a high probability of success. This will, of course, increase efficiency but it is also a huge value add to the customer - you're in a position to now delight them, because the right people are showing up, they know the history, they know what is required and so on. I just think it changes the model entirely."
"Outages are needed, machinery gets worn out" adds Sharma, "the question is how can you replace these in a planned way because when it's unplanned, that's where really bad stuff happens. The notion that is important to me is about focusing on getting to almost zero-unplanned downtime. That is where I think the industry is going to head."
As Yarnold had expressed to me previously, it seems clear that there are kindred spirits and a shared DNA somewhere between the two organisations, and most certainly a shared vision for the future of field service. In terms of their influence on the wider market both ServiceMax and GE have played a role in getting us to where we are today. How far they can continue to push the field service sector forwards as one cohesive unit remains to be seen, but the early indications would suggest that they will remain at the vanguard of innovation within service delivery for the foreseeable future. As each of Kasai, Yarnold, and Sharma commented at various points across our discussion - it's all hugely exciting.
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Jan 22, 2018 • Features • Logistics • 3D printing • Aftermarket • Asset Management • Asset Performance Management • Augmented Reality • Autonomous Vehicles • logistics • parts management • drones • Erik Kjellstrom • IoT • servicemax • Servitization • Spare Parts • spare parts management • Syncron
What will the impact of servitization and the move to preventative maintenance that it entails have on parts and inventory management? Erik Kjellstrom, Pre-Sales Manager, Syncron tackled this question at the Aftermarket Conference in Hamburg last...
What will the impact of servitization and the move to preventative maintenance that it entails have on parts and inventory management? Erik Kjellstrom, Pre-Sales Manager, Syncron tackled this question at the Aftermarket Conference in Hamburg last October. Kris Oldland followed up with him after the event to find out more more...
As Erik Kjellstrom, Pre-Sales Manager, Syncron, stepped down from the stage having just given a presentation at this year’s Aftermarket Conference, I was looking forward to the opportunity to catch up with him for a number of reasons.
His organisation has been something of an anomaly in our sector of recent years. A pioneering lone voice that often were seemingly single-handedly trying to bring a dedicated solution to what was often the unloved piece of the field service puzzle – parts management.
Whether, it be pricing, inventory management or stock ordering, Syncron have successfully over the last few years been one of few brands to be associated with taking this part of the aftermarket conversation seriously. We’ve seen Syncron a lot at various conferences over the last 24 months and almost each time they’ve been armed with case studies and hard data that revealed just how much (and how easily) their solution has improved their clients P&L both in terms of top line revenue and bottom line profit.
However, this time around there was a twist to their approach. Having recently brought a new in module into their offering that is focused on predictive maintenance and based on IoT, were they shifting their focus - or was this development just a natural evolution that reflected the changing dynamics of the industry?
The central thrust of Kjellstrom’s presentation was that essentially there are a number of interesting trends appearing in the aftermarket industry – covering a lot of the ground that regular readers of Field Service News will be familiar with.
We are seeing futuristic concepts such as Drones, 3D Printing, Augmented Reality and Autonomous Vehicles all of which have all been on the horizon offering the promise of industry revolution for a while but are now really starting to come into the mainstream conversationTo begin with, coming from the technology perspective we are seeing futuristic concepts such as Drones, 3D Printing, Augmented Reality and Autonomous Vehicles all of which have all been on the horizon offering the promise of industry revolution for a while but are now really starting to come into the mainstream conversation. Alongside this with have already seen wide adoption of Mobile, Cloud and increasingly the Internet of Things amongst manufacturers and service providers.
However, the changes we are seeing in our sector are not just driven by technology alone.
Sweeping demographic change within the workforce, accelerated by the ageing workforce crisis being faced by companies across the globe and being exacerbated by the unprecedented differences between the incoming Millennial generation and the outgoing Baby Boomers, is of course another factor driving industry evolution forwards.
Finally, add into this mix our shift to a much more service and outcome orientated society as a whole - arguably itself the result of the generational shift alongside the technical advances referenced above and we are seeing companies turn their entire business models on their head.
Servitization has gone from fringe concept to buzzword across the last eighteen months or so as talk of ever decreasing SLAs and increasing First-Time-Fix rates has morphed into discussions around guarantees of uptime and the financial impact of unplanned downtime.
As such our industry is in a fascinating and exciting state of flux at the moment and it was this rapid development and the various drivers behind it that were at the heart of the Kjellstrom presentation in Hamburg.
Of course, such dynamic changes within the sector need to be reflected within the solutions provided and it is the shift towards preventative maintenance (itself a major stepping stone on the way to servitization) that Syncron have focused their latest efforts on.
“We have been working very much to support more reactive service models in the past in terms of inventory management and pricing but what we are now doing, both from a product stand point but also from a service offering standpoint, is we are working towards an uptime supporting module.” Kjellstrom explained when we caught up.
In brief, Syncron are integrating a new module into their current service network optimisation capabilities.
These capabilities in the past had all been centred on the parts management area of the Aftermarket sector – pricing, inventory management, and ordering. However, their new module is a predictive maintenance module they call Uptime (makes sense), which Kjellstrom explains is intended to ‘blend together the aspect of inventory management and pricing etc with an understanding of the actual assets that use these parts.
It seems a natural alignment to bring the asset and the parts management together in the preventative management worldIt seems a natural alignment to bring the asset and the parts management together in the preventative management world. Indeed, much of reasoning behind this development from Syncron echoes a similar line of conversation that ServiceMax put forward when they announced their integration with GE Digital’s technology Asset Performance Management (APM).
Essentially both Syncron and ServiceMax are approaching the same central maxim - just from two different angles. In a world of IoT and sensor-led preventative maintenance the asset is King and everything else should fall in line around and work back from that one premise.
However, where one does feel that viewpoints will change between the two organisations is in how the ecosystem is built. Through their recent acquisition list including Servicemax, it is clear that GE Digital have their eyes set on building a comprehensive and all encompassing new platform for age of the Industrial Internet.
For Syncron however, the focus for the time being at least, appears to be in line with their best-of-breed heritage.
“I think that a product such as ours and a Field Service Management (FSM) system are complimentary products.” Kjellstrom explains.
“We have many instances where we will see a FSM system or a maintenance system that runs in compliment to the more Aftermarket focussed, parts oriented solutions such as ours. Perhaps what makes Syncron a little bit unique is the way we work and how we blend together the aspects of network optimisation and parts optimisation which is often natively something that belongs in a FSM tool.”
With so many technologies evolving at once a clear case could be made for establishing a comprehensive technology ecosystem across a service orientated business and Syncron is set to be an important part of that ecosystem.
Yet, in a world that seems to be in constant Beta, not all developments are equal and Kjellstrom believes it is important to understand how different technologies can impact the way we work when building out your own tech strategy.
Certain technologies will bring refinement whilst others offer revolution.
“We definitely see more potential impact from some types of the technologies than others,” he comments.
“What we are really interested in are the questions like will 3D printing totally replace a need for service part inventory management – and the answer is no it will not, it may enhance it but it will not replace it.”
Does the development of autonomous vehicles mean that we will begin to see car sharing across a team of engineers“How about autonomous vehicles? Does the development of autonomous vehicles mean that we will begin to see car sharing across a team of engineers” he asks rhetorically before outlining that such technology could lead to servitizing the fleet at which point automotive manufacturers concerns about spare parts really begin to truly change and evolve into an entirely new set of thinking and processes.
“These are the types of questions that we are interested in, in terms of the emerging technology.” He explains.
“What we are seeing is that some of these new technologies are really pushing towards a more uptime related world, whereas some technologies are more likely to become tools for us to simply improve existing processes.”
However, whilst he believes the shift to Servitization and outcome based solutions will continue to grow, Kjellstrom also insists that the traditional break-fix market and the aspects of pricing, parts management and inventory which that function drives forward, will never fully disappear.
“I am sure that the shift in focuses to uptime guarantees are growing rapidly and eventually break-fix is going to become less significant but there is always going to be the type of customers where uptime critical assets are not relevant.”
Indeed, whilst we wait for the weighting between the old and the new to do a 180 flip, one thing is clear, for the short-term at least we need to be able to accommodate both – which means looking to the future today – something Kjellstrom and his colleagues have embraced which is clearly evident by their introduction of the new Uptime module.
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Today at Minds + Machines Europe, GE outlined the course they have mapped out for digital industrial growth, unveiling solutions aimed squarely at the world of industrial assets, environments and operations.
The event has aimed to outline a path towards greater productivity for customers who take up the advances in their Asset Performance Management (APM) and ServiceMax industrial applications, powered by Predix, GE’s platform for the Industrial Internet.
“Europe can lead the digital industrial era,” said GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt. “Investment in technology, such as automation, advanced manufacturing, and artificial intelligence – along with new skills – can transform industry and drive productivity. GE has long been committed to Europe, and we are invested in its future.”
Delivering the Industrial Service Model of the Future
Transformation of the current industrial service model is a critical element of the digital industrial journey. Most companies today lack the ability to combine insights from data with actions in real time when managing and servicing assets. This contributes to unplanned downtime, which has significant impact on industrial productivity.
To reduce cost and eliminate downtime, it is critical for asset-intensive industries to shift from a reactive, break/fix service model to a predictive model. This change will help companies better understand potential equipment issues preemptively or act upon them quickly with the correct tools and parts.
To achieve this, GE Digital unveiled an integrated solution to deliver the industrial service model of the future that combines the power of ServiceMax, its cloud-based field service management (FSM) solution, with its intelligent Asset Performance Management portfolio. Available in late 2017, the combination of ServiceMax + APM will enable industrial companies to transform how they predict, manage and service the entire asset lifecycle.
The Industrial Internet is enabling companies to take advantage of possibilities that previously seemed out of reach -Bill Ruh, CEO, GE Digital
GE Digital’s APM and FSM solutions automatically collect and analyze service data – from predictive maintenance needs to failure information and recommended work actions – to help industrial companies move beyond traditional asset monitoring to advanced predictive maintenance and asset performance management.
This new approach also provides enhanced scheduling capabilities. Matching customers’ service workforces with their service needs, the offering helps industrial companies dispatch the right engineers to the right job at the right time – and ensure they are qualified, prepared and equipped to successfully complete their work. Receiving updates from workers in the field, the software provides a closed loop from issue identification to resolution, while 'learning' about the most efficient issue resolution methods over time to improve analytics with each alert.
As companies accelerate digital transformation through the combination of GE Digital’s APM and ServiceMax offerings, they can more proactively manage the entire asset lifecycle, increasing productivity and operational efficiencies that can open the door to future business growth.
Transforming service at the edge
Additionally, GE Ventures today launched Avitas Systems, a new data-driven company that will use predictive data analytics, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) to deliver advanced inspection services to the oil and gas, transportation and energy industries.
“The inspection services industry requires cutting-edge technologies to avoid unplanned asset downtime and deliver new, valuable insights,” said Alex Tepper, Managing Director of Avitas Systems. “We deploy state-of-the-art robotics and cloud-based technology to give customers the customised service and insights-based data they need to advance from reactive to predictive repair – no matter where their assets are located.”
GE estimates that service transformation represents a $40 billion market opportunity.
By reducing high-risk tasks through robotics, Avitas Systems can make inspection processes safer and more efficient through data automation, decreasing costs by up to 25%. By performing inspections based on anticipated risk, instead of regular time intervals, Avitas Systems can also help to increase asset longevity.
GE estimates that service transformation represents a $40 billion market opportunity. With ServiceMax + APM and Avitas Systems, GE is helping industrial companies manage, optimize and gain insight into their assets across each stage of the lifecycle – all driven by Predix. As the only platform that provides computing capabilities from the edge to the cloud, Predix gives GE customers visibility, control and analytic insights to every part of their industrial infrastructure and operations.
Transforming Energy Management and Customer Operations
GE also announced a suite of new industrial applications, solutions and partnerships to help companies take advantage of the Industrial Internet – moving beyond the factory walls to enable the digital industrial companies of the future. The solutions build on GE’s expansive suite of Predix-powered tools and applications purpose-built for the Industrial Internet.
- Data-Optimized Energy Trading & the ‘Digital Utility’: To help utilities navigate the changing energy market, GE Power unveiled the ’Digital Utility,’ a suite of Predix-based applications that connect real-time machine data with a utility’s profitability. The new Business Optimization software is first of its kind, bringing analytics to the business side of power and utilities companies to help energy traders act profitably in long-term, day-ahead and short-term wholesale markets. The Digital Utility includes updates to GE Power’s Operations Optimization software, incorporating closed-loop analytics to improve generation efficiency for entire fleets. Additionally, GE’s APM solutions for energy businesses now connect all assets across the entire Electricity Value Network (EVN) in an integrated application, providing customers with a single view of assets spanning power generation to the grid.
- Advanced Utility Operations: GE Digital alliance partner PwC showcased its Predix-powered commercial operations solution for utility companies. This solution enables executives to identify margin ‘leakage.’ The solution analyses plant performance data from GE’s Operations Optimisation application, commercial data from dispatch and market-facing system from GE's Business Optimisation application. The solution is expected to launch this summer.
- Reduced Carbon Dioxide Emissions: GE Distributed Power and Dalkia announced that through GE distributor Clarke Energy, the companies have equipped more than one-third of Dalkia’s 170+ Jenbacher gas engines with GE’s myPlant* APM solution, powered by Predix. In total, the fleet of engines could power more than 240,000 French households, resulting in lower carbon dioxide emissions – which equates to taking nearly 100,000 European cars off the road annually.
- Predix-Powered Clean Energy: GE Renewable Energy and Fina Enerji signed a 10-year full service agreement that covers 150 GE wind turbines in Turkey. The deal will implement GE’s Predix-based Digital Wind Farm hardware and software solutions, which use data analytics to increase wind farm operations. With these digital capabilities, GE Renewable Energy will help develop smarter wind power forecasts for the Turkish market.
- Predix-Enabled Additive Manufacturing: GE Additive will add Predix edge technology to its Concept Laser M2 cusing additive machines. This move allows customers to remotely monitor and collect data from their machines – helping them analyse trends and uncover insights to improve asset performance and operations.
- Data-Driven Drilling: Last year, GE's Marine Solutions and Maersk Drilling announced a partnership to collaborate on a data analytic-driven pilot project, aimed at increasing Maersk’s drilling vessel’s productivity by reducing maintenance costs by up to 20 percent and increasing drilling productivity. The deployment of SeaStream* Insight, GE’s APM solution for Marine powered by Predix, is already showing great potential, and Maersk and GE are looking to expand onto Maersk’s second rig, Interceptor, to broaden the outcomes achieved from the pilot project.
Together, these solutions and deployments advance GE’s vision for the Industrial Internet with a portfolio designed to accelerate customers’ transformation journeys and create new paths to growth for customers of every size and scale.
Minds + Machines Europe 2017 convenes the best and the brightest of the technology world —including GE customers, developers, partners, industry luminaries and technology thought leaders. This year’s event dove deeper into the technology driving digital industrial transformation.