Visual Remote Troubleshooting
Manufacturers of all kinds are being challenged to deliver new products in record time using an increasingly complex internal and external supply chain that includes experts who are located all over the world. But equipment downtime, lost production, delays in product reviews and high travel costs to troubleshoot problems can kill the bottom line. With operations often spread across the globe, delayed decisions can cause costs to mount quickly. Commonly, an expert (or whole team of experts) boards a plane to go to solve a problem, causing further delays and incurring expensive travel costs.
The use of outsourced offshore partners, as well as shrinking product life cycles, has increased the demand for an operations-driven, mobile, video collaboration that immediately connects experts. Such equipment can be suitable in a variety of applications including plant maintenance management, internal and field service equipment troubleshooting, heavy equipment maintenance and repair, product and process design, and safety audits and inspections.
Making the World Smaller
The Onsight system from Librestream connects engineering teams, supply chain partners, customers and operation staff immediately. A wireless mobile device streams live video from the shop floor or customer location to design or engineering team specialists. Combined with two-way audio and telestration (on-screen drawing), the teams can quickly “see” and consult with remote co-workers or outside resources on issues and problems. Better decisions are made faster, which saves valuable production time and accelerates product and service delivery with significantly less travel required.
Librestream’s company vision is to use live video to stream critical information from manufacturing facilities around the world to outside specialists, allowing them to troubleshoot problems remotely, modify designs and solve customer issues in realtime. As a group of engineers, company founders had seen first-hand how time consuming, costly and unproductive it was to travel to the site of a problem before work could resume. The company’s alternative takes those delays out of the manufacturing process.
The Onsight system is made up of three main components. The wireless device is available in three models (1000, 2000 and 2000EX). Collaboration software runs on the remote expert’s desktop. And Management Suite software provides system administrators with centralized management tools for the system. The video collaboration devices have been designed for rugged environments. They have an IP 64 enclosure rating and are certified as intrinsically safe. Manufacturers now use Onsight to manage their supply chain, conduct design reviews or repair equipment across various segments including aerospace, automotive, industrial equipment, medical devices and consumer packaged goods.
The solution enables quick and effective response to issues on the shop floor, helping manufacturers to reduce unplanned downtime, accelerate new product launches, share best practices and improve worker productivity. Better decisions can be made faster, saving valuable production time and requiring significantly less travel.
On the shop floor, operators use the mobile device to share video, voice, telestration and images with the experts who interact live through the collaboration PC software. The remote experts can also share images or pre-recorded videos to play on the touchscreen panel of the device. By sharing visual content, the experts can more easily provide plant floor personnel or field technicians with instructions. The system is extremely portable as it connects with wireless, satellite and cellular networks, and the cameras are hardened for durability.
All communication and data is encrypted to provide tight security. For clarity, the camera provides close-up images with 1-cm macro zoom and 10× optical zoom. Onsight can even attach to external devices such as a microscope or borescope to send additional visuals.
For clearer communications, the realtime high quality video streaming and two-way VOIP audio is enhanced through the use of a built-in speakerphone and microphone in addition to the headsets. All participants in the discussion can also perform two-way, onscreen drawings. For record keeping, the system provides bi-directional video recording and still image capture.
Time is money, and when problems arise on the shop floor, quick resolution is essential. The Onsight system brings the problem to the expert, rather than the other way around, providing the opportunity for immediate troubleshooting, getting operations up and running without delay.