NI to set up machine condition monitoring lab in Thailand
By Digital News Asia May 6, 2013
- NI signs MoU with King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok, Kaowna Electric & Business Co Ltd and Mataneepan Co Ltd
- MCM lab features full spectrum of hardware and software technologies for machine condition monitoring
NATIONAL Instruments (NI) is setting up a state-of-the-art machine condition monitoring (MCM) laboratory in Bangkok, Thailand in partnership with King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok (KMUTNB), Kaowna Electric & Business Co Ltd. (KEB) and Mataneepan Co Ltd.
The announcement was made following the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the four parties at the Faculty of Technical Education, KMUTNB.
A first for NI in South-East Asia, the MCM lab at KMUTNB will be a full-fledged training centre with a full spectrum of machine condition monitoring workshops and professional services that includes motor fault analysis, motor repair and inspection.
The lab will cater to companies engaged in large scale manufacturing and other industry and academic stakeholders that are interested in how MCM technologies can help drive operational efficiency, reduce costs, and increase workplace safety, NI said in a statement.
“A few minutes of downtime in a manufacturing plant could cost a company millions of dollars. Machine condition monitoring helps ensure that motor faults are mitigated, or quickly spotted and resolved. With machineries running optimally, companies increase overall productivity and decrease costs associated with unplanned maintenance and downtime,” said Phatharadej Sophanpanichkul, managing director at KEB, which boasts more than 20 years in engineering services and repair.
Chandran Nair, NI's Asean managing director, said with a strong manufacturing and industrial sector, Thailand is an ideal location for the company’s very first machine condition monitoring laboratory in South-East Asia.
“Thailand is poised to become a thriving technology hub, and we hope to contribute to the nation’s competitiveness in engineering and high technology with the establishment of the MCM facility,” he added.
Predicted to reach US$2.4 billion over the next five years, the global MCM equipment market has grown significantly in the United States, Europe and industrialised markets in Asia including Japan and South Korea.
According to NI, demand for MCM technologies is also robust in emerging markets such as China, India, Taiwan, Indonesia and Vietnam, on the back of greater investments in manufacturing and the shift of global production bases to this region.
In Thailand, MCM is particularly gaining ground among local and multinational companies in petrochemicals, pulp & paper, steel production, and automotive assembly and test.
The second largest economy in South-East Asia, Thailand represents a fast growing market for NI. For more than a decade, the company has been expanding its business in the country through strategic partnerships with academia and leading industry players in the electronics, manufacturing, automotive and energy sectors.
Commenting on the partnership, KMUTNB president Dr Teravuti Boonyasopon said: “Ensuring that our students acquire high quality and industry-relevant skills is important to us. We believe that having this MCM laboratory in our campus would immensely benefit our students and faculty, and look forward to taking an active role in the research activities, demos, and training workshops at the lab in the future.”
The ability to monitor remotely is enabled by vibration-based MCM technologies. Mataneepan, am engineering instruments trading company and a strategic partner in the joint venture, will be providing the sensors for the motor fault experiments and simulations at the MCM lab.
“We are pleased to collaborate with NI, KMUTNB, and KEB in this initiative, and help educate customers as well as engineering students on vibration-based MCM technologies. Remote monitoring gives companies greater flexibility in asset management, promotes cost savings and occupational safety,” said Songkran Somhwang, general manager at Mataneepan.
The MCM lab at KMUTNB is expected to be fully equipped and ready for customer and academic workshops by the third quarter of 2013.