The expansion of the software-as-a-service (SaaS) trend—where instead of buying and upgrading software on your own is replaced with a subscription to the software that’s kept up to date by the provider—into machines-as-a-service (MaaS) and robots-as-a-service (RaaS) has been one of the more game changing industrial automation technology developments. This transition not only impacts how industrial companies purchase and maintain technology (i.e., moving such expenses from capex to opex) it’s also changing how technology providers structure their products and business.
Fluke, a well-known provider of electronic test tools and software for measuring and condition monitoring, is increasing its SaaS capabilities with the acquisition Azima DLI, a supplier of subscription-based remote condition monitoring and AI-powered vibration analytics software. DLI Engineering was founded in 1966, acquired by Azima in 2008 to establish the Azima DLI reliability-as-a-service system, and then purchased by SymphonyAI in 2019.
Azima DLI's Watchman 360 vibration analytics platform detects specific faults, predicts time-to-failure and recommends corrective action. According to Fluke, Watchman 360 has “the most advanced automated diagnostic engine on the market, which has been developed over 30+ years and analyzes up to 93% of machine tests without human intervention.” This technology is designed to help users increase asset uptime, reduce reactive and unnecessary preventive maintenance, optimize manufacturing operations and asset health while maximizing revenue through accurate, predictive insights.
A key aspect of the Watchman 360 service involves the use of Azima DLI experts to perform complex vibration analyses. These expert-driven analyses provide users with reports on maintenance actions to enhance operations and reduce downtime and related costs.
The algorithm used in Watchman 360 filters out issues that don't require expert analysis, which Fluke Reliability said helps industrial teams prioritize the most critical work—an important issue for most companies due to industry’s ongoing skills shortage.
Clarifying how Watchman 360 will fit with Fluke Reliability’s eMaint CMMS (computerized maintenance management system), Malhotra said, the two technologies are “very synergistic. eMaint is a CMMS while Watchman 360 an analytics platform. The Watchman 360 analyses and recommendations will lead to a work order in eMaint. Once the work order is closed, the data is stored there for future reference and for benchmarking.”