Project Description

Recently we saw that HutGrip can provide great value to industries that have to deal with equipment which has a lot of gearboxes. One of our first customers fits perfectly in this case scenario. If the gearbox is hot it indicates reduced efficiency or potential equipment problem.

The Printing and Packaging industry gets involved in the production of almost every product we buy. Big brands put thousands into delivering the best package. A single elaborate box for a brand like Jack Daniels or Victoria Secret’s for example, will usually go through up to 15 different machines before reaching the final product. Once a box specification is ready, the production process involves printing, cutting, gluing and folding the raw cardboard. It takes seconds to to produce the end product from each of these steps. However making a single error at one of the later stages results in losing a lot of time and raw materials. There is different equipment involved in each stage but almost all of it has gearboxes.

The showcase below shares the story how TPC Printing and Packaging located in Chattanooga, TN uses HutGrip to prevent their 6-color printing press machine from overheating.

The process

Thanks to the use of gearboxes, a small rotation force (torque) can be used to produce a much greater rotation force, and a slow rate of revolution can be speeded up. In many industries, the gearbox, which is the equipment that transmits mechanical power, is an essential piece of equipment. Gearbox condition monitoring is used in a range of industries including power generation, marine, automotive and aerospace. In all these industries early fault detection is critical in increasing reliability as well as lowering operational and maintenance costs.

Measure & Collect Data

It takes the operator about 2 hours just to remove the unit cover of the press machine and put it back on. There is no practical way to check the temperature in critical locations where a bearing might overheat and cause multiple failures. HutGrip takes measurements in real-time and sends the data to the Cloud service every minute. Currently we are tracking temperature data. The data comes from temperature sensors located inside the gearboxes. Each datapoint is stored in a data feed associated with its source (for example some kind of sensor or a PLC controller). The datapoint contains the time a measurement was taken and the value of the measurement.

Analyze Data

After just one ‘ideal’ iteration of the process, HutGrip identifies the baselines. These baselines are the best desired values for all measured parameters. If you know the baselines in advance, HutGrip can start analyzing data right away. When you know the baselines, you can define critical limits for each data feed. After some more iterations of the process HutGrip can suggest you baseline and critical limits adjustments based on the data.

In this case HutGrip provides algorithms that forecast how the temperature changes. This algorithms looks at the historical data and forecasts 2 hours ahead. If it finds that in 2 hours the critical limit will be reached, it will send a notification. In this way the operator and maintenance team will have reaction time and will be able to prevent the failure. They can slow down the machine, reschedule a job and plan their production taking in mind the current condition of the system.

Identify Optimizations

HutGrip provides the company with multiple reports. There they use other algorithms and find how to make the process better. For example one of our reports uses an algorithm which looks at multiple data feeds and identifies relationships between them. This helps them optimize the efficiency of their overall production process. For exampe a single box can go through up to 15 different machines before it is a ready product. HutGrip can show you how much time did a product spend in each step, where and how many failures happened in each step, was there a chain reaction in those failures and others. The bigger picture and the relationships between each failure helps the Plant Manager decide where to put the focus and what to improve first to achieve maximum results.


Applying the results is easy once you know what you need to do. The output of the HutGrip data analysis and reports are specific actions and suggestions to help you with that.

One hour of downtime costs that company $5,000 and it literally pays the bill for having a whole year of the HutGrip service on their two most critical equipment units.

Printing and Packaging

TPC is a highly experienced, independent producer of custom folding cartons and promotional packaging

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