The future of industrial plant maintenance is digital 

How LOCTITE Pulse from Henkel Adhesive Technologies advances Industry 4.0

Digital Future Aug 3, 2023

Imagine managing a plant and overseeing a complex production process where every step counts and a disruption would cause delays, money and in the worst case represent a safety risk. What if a data-enabled solution helped you to oversee your equipment and track everything in real time around the clock? Solutions that are considered as Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) can keep track of your equipment’s heartbeat and support the detection of irregularities, sending a notification so that you can act before they cause trouble. In this way, it supports your existing maintenance routine in order to increase plant safety, productivity, and above all, a new kind of peace of mind. After all, much is at stake when failures disrupt production processes.

Almost every industrial plant has a large number of critical assets. Two examples of such critical assets which are usually found thousands of times in each industrial plant are flanges and steam traps. Both can heavily impact plant productivity (energy loss, CO2 emissions and event asset breakdown) as well as safety if not regularly inspected and maintained. Keeping track of their state is difficult without a proper monitoring solution in place. With LOCTITE Pulse our adhesives experts developed a comprehensive Industrial Internet of Things solution for the needs and challenges of industrial production companies.

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Smart maintenance: from sustainability to safety

Avoiding downtime and ensuring safety are the two top priorities for maintenance experts. With its broad portfolio of LOCTITE solutions for maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO), Adhesive Technologies has been helping industrial customers all over the world support these goals for many decades. With LOCTITE Pulse, Henkel is now going one step further. It supports the detection or prediction of failures such as leakages at a very early point of time so they can be repaired during operations or planned shutdowns. This offers additional peace of mind for the operator team: They know that their critical equipment is monitored 24/7 preventing major incidents that might build up unnoticed.

More than other industrial areas, maintenance suffers from extreme staff shortages. LOCTITE Pulse digital check-ups help in managing these shortages. And maintenance teams can enjoy another benefit: Smart Maintenance reduces the stress of instant trouble shooting, because repairs can be planned ahead, based on digital insights.

A production worker is holding a smart phone standing in front of equipment to do maintenance.

The IIoT solution allows you to check on the status of your plant's assets anywhere, at any time.

Digital monitoring of critical assets such as flanges or steam traps also helps to save cost and energy. An example: Handling an emergency caused by a leaking flange is typically more than ten times more costly than fixing malfunctions predictively by using condition data, for example from Henkel’s LOCTITE Pulse Smart Flange solution. Another way to save cost is Henkel’s LOCTITE Pulse Smart Steam Trap solution: it supports the detection of irregularity early, helping to avoid massive energy losses and asset breakdown.

Apart from being cost and safety factors, leakages can also impact the environment and thus the reputation of a company. Every hour a leak goes unnoticed can lead to environmental issues such as water contamination. Smart maintenance helps customers to reach their sustainability targets and protect their reputation.

Dr. Michael Honné, Head of MRO/Industry 4.0 at Adhesive Technologies

LOCTITE Pulse offers data-enabled solutions that combine our industrial maintenance expertise with IoT technology, catering to the needs of our customers who are embracing digitalization. By focusing on innovation, sustainability, and digitalization, we provide smart solutions that help our customers navigate the path towards a more efficient and future-ready industrial landscape.

Putting our know-how into practice at the Shell Energy and Chemicals Park Rheinland

Shell runs one of the biggest energy and chemicals parks in Germany. Located near Cologne/Bonn, it plays a key role in producing clean energy for the future. The forward-looking site strives for the highest possible standards of safety. Monitoring the refinery’s pipe network with its thousands of pipes and flanges used to be a complex and time-consuming challenge – not least because the network includes a great number of non-visible pipelines around the site’s road junctions. The goal of the site’s engineering team was to find a way to digitalize pipe monitoring. It was of particular interest to Shell that in the case of a leak the sensor could indicate precisely where the leak is located.

Henkel was identified as an excellent partner to implement the solution: LOCTITE Pulse smartens up existing pipe works and can be mounted during on-going operation – no need to shut down for installation works. You fix the device, initiate the software, and leakage monitoring can start right away. Identifying the location of a leak is, of course, part of the package. For Fabian van Strälen, Senior Asset Inspector Shell, smart maintenance made by Henkel is the right step for his future-oriented park: “It is important for Shell and for me personally to keep the site safe and to be able to enjoy work in a secure environment.”

A close-up of a red Loctite PULSE device in a production site.

LOCTITE Pulse sensors can be installed at production sites on critical equipment and continuously capture data about their health status.

Christin Tix, Product Owner LOCTITE Pulse App

At LOCTITE Pulse, we place great emphasis on working closely with our customers to understand their needs and pain points. We start any development in the LOCTITE Pulse app from customer insights, and focus on offering the best user experience (UX) in the market, making the app intuitive and easy to use.

How digitalization is driving innovations

Together with internal and external partners, the LOCTITE Pulse team develops the software, hardware, and sensor technology to offer innovative solutions for digital maintenance. The LOCTITE Pulse team is a global and diverse team of a dozen or so nationalities, among them US, German, Irish, Indian, Dutch, Belgian and French. Their laboratories around the globe pick up latest trends and ideas and adapt solutions to the local markets. External partners are technology leaders all over the world. The LOCTITE team leverages their cutting-edge expertise to develop solutions beyond adhesives. By combining digitalization with our innovative product portfolio, we are helping our customers around the globe to create value and drive efficiency in their operations. After its launch in Western Europe in 2022, LOCTITE Pulse will continue to expand in markets including the US and APAC region over the coming years. And looking beyond existing technologies, our experts are continuing to work on a completely new class of digitalized support when it comes to maintenance, repair, and overhaul.

LOCTITE Pulse - Smart Maintenance solutions to listen to your equipment’s heartbeat!

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