We Need Changes Made To The Production Line Controls At Nine Of Our Potato Chip Lines In Six Different Locations Across North America.
What Our Client Said
We are an important name in the food and beverage industry, making a leading brand of potato chips. We need a company to deploy changes to nine production lines across six of our facilities across the US and Canada with minimal downtime. The changes include significant modifications to existing PLC5 and ControlLogix processors, Wonderware HMI, Historian and APC QuickStudy systems. All edits will need to be simulated and tested prior to installation.
What We Heard
Because we are geographically diverse, we need a well-respected systems integrator who can service all our North American operations without problems or delays. This experienced automation partner needs to be able to handle a good number of complex upgrades to our control systems while coordinating work with our operations departments across nine lines in six locations, and downtime must be minimized.
What We Did
LSI started by listening to the customer, identifying priorities and developing a detailed execution plan to leverage its offices across the United States and Canada. In order to successfully implement this effort, LSI professionals were utilized from our offices in Colorado, Tennessee, Georgia and Toronto. The entire project was managed so that upgrades were made logically and efficiently, with very little interruption to the potato chip producer’s operations.
- PLC configuration
- HMI configuration
- Multi-site installation
- Simulation of modifications before installation
- Site coordination with corporate interface
LSI received and configured the new Dell Server platform computers and hosted 30%, 60% and 90% design reviews with the customer and plant leadership. During planned outages, LSI deployed to the facilities to make the requisite changes and commission the system. The changes included significant modifications to existing Rockwell PLC5 and ControlLogix processors, Wonderware HMI, Historian and APC QuickStudy systems. All edits were tested and simulated prior to installation. Deployment for installation and commissioning was done in a compressed time period for all customer facilities.
The Results Speak For Themselves
The project reduced the testing time required after line changes and provided historian data back to the MES system. This improved data allowed for operators to make better, more accurate decisions about production adjustments and line productivity.
Better potato chips
The upgrade monitored, analyzed and adjusted the operating parameters (such as time and temperature) of the process based on the seasonality of the potatoes to reduce waste.
The production facilities involved in the project enjoyed a 40% to 50% reduction of waste due to improved fryer controls based on finished chip image data (gauged by checking the browning on chips). Not only was the project a technological upgrade, but a productivity upgrade as well.
LSI listened, then determined the best course of action to provide the customer with coordinated action and centralized communication. Thanks to LSI’s global resources and well-managed teamwork, it was easy for the customer to understand what steps were being taken to complete its project and how progress was being made once it began. Work may have been happening at six geographically diverse locations, but LSI provided a single, experienced voice for them to collaborate with.