Machine Condition Monitoring for an International Airport

Industry: Transportation
Product: Wzzard Intelligent Sensing Platform

The Challenge

London’s Heathrow Airport is one of the world’s busiest. That doesn’t just mean that a lot of people will be passing through; it means that the airport must handle enormous quantities of baggage — about 270,000 pieces every day. Ideally, each bag will end up on the right plane every single time, day in and day out. Security concerns require that the luggage will not only be sorted and transported; it must be X-rayed as well. And In a baggage handling system that is running at full capacity, a failure in just one machine or system will be an enormous problem.

Heathrow needs to be able to monitor the health and condition of every machine in the system, so that problems can be identified as they begin to develop, and proactive maintenance can be done before failures occur. Downtime is not an option.

The Solution

There are simple, measurable parameters that can be used to predict when a machine will need maintenance. Comparing things like temperature, vibration, and current use to historical readings will raise a red flag if the newer numbers exceed acceptable parameters. So a system integrator installed the Wzzard Intelligent Sensing Platform from B+B SmartWorx. The Wzzard platform creates a complete connectivity stack between sensors at the network edge and applications at the network core or in the cloud. It uses two pieces of IoT technology to do so; wireless Wzzard Intelligent Edge Nodes and the SmartSwarm Network Gateway.

The Wzzard Intelligent Edge Nodes connect to new or pre-existing industry standard sensors, read their data and wirelessly transmit it to the SmartSwarm Network Gateway. Every node has routing capabilities, so they are able to form extremely reliable, highly scalable, self-sustaining wireless mesh networks. Individual nodes need not be within wireless range of the gateway, as they can route the data across fellow nodes until it reaches its destination. The SmartSwarm Network Gateway then provides secure network connectivity via either wired Ethernet or cellular data connections, with automatic fail-over.


The Wzzard Intelligent Sensing Platform

  • Wzzard wireless mesh networks cover distances where a wired sensor network would be cost prohibitive.
  • Wzzard is an easy retrofit – it works with existing, industry standard sensors
  • The monitored machines need no data ports – Wzzard collects the relevant information from external sensors.

Benefits Enabled by the Wzzard Platform

  • Real-time access to data through a remote dashboard
  • Data analytics not only detects failures, it predicts failures.
  • Alert levels set to provide real-time text message or email notification of thresholds exceeded
  • Diminished downtime and related costs.
  • Machine condition data is made available wherever it is useful.
  • Automatic alerts on your computer, tablet or smart phone