21 May 2024

Driving efficiency and sustainability

FourJaw CEO Chris Iveson (left) and CTO Robin Hartley-Willows (right)

AMS (Architectural & Metal Systems), a specialist manufacturer of aluminium extrusion and façade systems, has announced it has achieved a 19% improvement in machine utilisation and identified annual efficiency and sustainability improvements worth more than €30,000 within three months of installing machine monitoring technology from FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics.

AMS, which employs more than 300 people at its 400,000 square feet facility in Cork, Ireland, introduced FourJaw’s plug-and-play machine monitoring system in December 2023 to measure machine utilisation and support its move to shift-based working patterns. AMS wanted to provide site managers with an objective view of production visibility during lights-out manufacturing and improve its ability to deliver products to customers within short lead times, without routinely requiring overtime.

FourJaw’s platform, which AMS installed initially on several CNC machines, immediately provided reliable real-time data on machine utilisation, enhancing resource planning and enabling the manufacturer to identify areas for process improvement and cost reduction. Improved communication between managers and machine operators, and interventions inspired by analysis of downtime data, have enabled AMS to reduce time lost on each monitored machine by an average of 20 minutes per shift.

AMS says it has improved machine utilisation levels, which ran at an average of 39.8% when FourJaw was installed, to 52.9% within three months. AMS calculates that these initial efficiency improvements are worth between €19,000 and €28,000 a year.

Analysis of energy consumption data recorded by FourJaw has also identified opportunities to reduce energy use by as much as €8,000 a year on some machines, as well as further savings worth €12,000 a year by reducing energy wasted on machines that were not being isolated correctly.

AMS says it is also now using FourJaw data to help inform its machine investment decisions, and the company has also seen customer satisfaction improvements from its ability to propose more competitive prices, quote more accurate lead times, and provide customers with real-time updates on production progress.

Chris Ryan, Continuous Improvement Manager, AMS, said: “FourJaw was an easy investment to make and a giant leap forward in our digitisation journey. It has been adopted as part of the culture of our organisation, improving efficiency and communication and providing objective data to inform production schedules, operational improvements and machine investment strategies. We have achieved significant financial, productivity and sustainability gains with FourJaw, and expect to make further improvements as we progress.”

Chris Iveson, CEO at FourJaw Manufacturing Analytics, comments: “AMS has hit the ground running with FourJaw as the cornerstone of its smart factory initiatives. The insights gained and improvements made by the team in the first three months are excellent. As AMS has demonstrated, the beauty of FourJaw is that manufacturers can start small, make improvements in one area, and then scale those gains factory-wide. I’m excited to see what more AMS will achieve with FourJaw.”

 

Company info: FourJaw