Since 100 years the core business of company ZIPPE Industrieanlagen GmbH is the design and construction of high performance batch and cullet plants. As one of the few full-range supplier in this industrial sector, the spectrum covers all services of plant construction: engineering, planning, construction, production, process control, installation, site management for all trades as well as commissioning and training of customer personnel and services for the running operation.
ZIPPE is operating in all important markets of the glass industry worldwide and applies the most modern technology already during the planning stage.
The current situation regarding Covid-19 with the resulting travel restrictions requires a rethinking concerning installation, commissioning, and service of the different machine and plant parts. Here ZIPPE sets on remote support for customers with the help of augmented-reality (AR), remote services, and teleservices.
In times when unrestricted traveling is not possible, ZIPPE is in a position to support its customers from a distance. In this case it is often challenging that the customer sided technician as well as the ZIPPE service specialist “speak the same language”. In the past, numerous e-mails were necessary in which the situation on site was described also with photo documentation. With the help of modern technology it is now possible to support customers in a significantly more efficient and quick way. This is where Augmented Reality (AR) steps in.
To benefit from the AR support, the customer installs a mobile app on Android or IOS on site and the working environment is transmitted to the service technician in real time via video streaming with the smartphone or tablet camera. The ZIPPE remote expert uses a specifically equipped service computer in his office and has the latest documentation of the customer plant at hand. The technician communicates with the customer via various optical tools such as arrow markers and free hand drawings, language, and text input. By means of this virtual “step-by-step navigation”, it is now possible to analyze and solve a problem respectively to execute maintenance works more quickly. This technology enables the user to perform installations and repair works under instruction personally on site.
As ZIPPE supplies plants worldwide in different time zones, our support is always connected with a timed coordination of the service technicians. For production reasons, only a limited time frame is available in many cases. Through the remote support with Augmented Reality a significant improvement is recognizable.
A faster and more efficient maintenance and repair of plants also implies shorter downtimes and a higher plant availability.
With the help of digital assistance systems, shortages on skilled workers can be reduced or compensated to a certain degree. They can support new or less trained customer personnel who are not yet very familiar with the machines and plants.
In addition to the visual support and support by phone, ZIPPE also offers a Remote Service in order to analyze automation systems and control stations via remote maintenance.
Upon customer request the ZIPPE remote service enables to access the plant directly from Wertheim. Here problems can be analyzed, corresponding adjustments can be realized, and necessary measures can be induced.
The comprising teleservice and remote maintenance concept by ZIPPE leads the way towards economic automation. ZIPPE is on the safe side for the location independent maintenance of its plants and machines. The setup of the secured remote connection is for example started by pushing a release button in the control cabinet. After a successful connection setup, a remote connection to a restricted production cell or a certain group of automation components can be effected. Access to defined automation components can be either granted or restricted through the specific router configuration. This leads to an even higher safety level of the plant IT.
The secure remote maintenance concept by ZIPPE offers many further advantages besides the location independent availability of public networks. To name a few would be the reduced travel costs and downtimes, better customer relations due to higher service quality, and less effort with warranties. Moreover, fewer devices are necessary due to remote maintenance, routing, and firewall all combined in one device and the operator network is protected against unauthorized access. Furthermore, there are no safety problems associated with the theft of equipment, the administrative effort remains the same, even for an increasing number of machines, and the customer alone enables the remote maintenance. Thus, the machine integration in customer networks is simple. The resolution of IP address conflicts is also faster and the protection of plant/machines from the operator network and vice versa is guaranteed. Moreover, no adaptation of machines and plants as well as of no software is necessary.
The remote maintenance modules by ZIPPE are network components which unite the function of the router, the firewall, and the VPN device. Aim is the maximum security and plant availability. The maximum level of security is reached with IPsec protocol on layer 3 and a high VPN data throughput of up to 70 Mbps are possible. Current certificates such as x509.v3 are supported and exclusively outgoing User Datagram Protocol (UDP) connections of the operator network are used. A stateful inspection firewall for dynamic filtering and a connection for the VPN acceptance button and VPN status LED exists.
A further important component of the ZIPPE teleservices is the existing telephone support during working hours and the 24h-service-hotline which has been in operation since year 2000.
24/7, 365 days a year, an entire plant lifetime ZIPPE is available for its customers by telephone in case of a service need. In technical terms this is also referred to as lifecycle support.