Smart plant: the future of the Aluminium Industry

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Beyond increased automation, the modern plants are becoming more and more connected and "smart". Operators have access to accurate information collected in real time, but the amount of information they receive can lead to confusion. Digital solutions must make operator-machine interactions easier, for instance using mobile devices and web technologies to offer more convenient and more intuitive interfaces, or using data generated throughout the whole production process to improve reliability and reduce the operating costs. 
More specifically, in the aluminium industry, Fives is working with its customers towards combining all these new technologies, in order to improve the efficiency and working conditions at all steps of the production and service of the anodes. 

This work has allowed Fives to propose the following solutions:

  • Pot Tending Machine Automatic Driving Assistance sequence. It allows for reducing Health & Safety hazards for the human operator on the floor, saving labour costs and having additional pot service functions not done today or done poorly: automation should improve productivity and working conditions.
  • SMARTCrane, a shift from reactive support to pro-active maintenance, relying on a “real time” service to improve Overall Equipment Efficiency. Fives is working in partnership with a smelter to implement SMARTCrane on existing cranes. Once implemented on the full potline scale, it will be possible to analyse the cranes as a fleet and compare their conditions of operations. The combined expertise of Fives in crane design and in data science makes it possible to treat the data gathered and elaborate machine learning algorithms, to ultimately reduce non predictable downtime, and apply condition based predictive maintenance. 
  • Amelios Suite, a comprehensive monitoring solution for full Carbon Material Tracking and Process and Equipment Optimisation throughout the whole anode. Amelios Suite already includes a Green and a Baked Anode Package and shortly an Anode Usage Package.

Digital provides a technological response to today’s new industrial challenges: economic and operational performance, the preservation of natural resources and human roles in plants. Fives is willing to work with his customers to further digitalize their plant, streamline efficiency, and create an environment open to innovation. 

For more than 2 centuries, Fives has been a pioneering group, innovating for the plant of the future. By entering the Digitalisation area, Fives guides its customers along the Industry 4.0 revolution.