Parker Hannifin Corporation demonstrated its Parker Tracking System (PTS) at the AWEA Windpower 2012 exhibition. The system tracks OEM hose assemblies for easy replacement, and reduces equipment and machinery downtime by increasing the speed, timing and accuracy of acquiring replacements. For remote wind-turbine operations, using Parker hydraulic hoses and PTS can eliminate hours of costly equipment downtime, helping customers achieve greater throughput, and maintenance and repair organizations service customers more efficiently .
PTS, developed for the United States by Parker’s Hose Products Division, has gained rapid acceptance since its initial launch two years ago. The system now manages more than 1,000,000 uniquely identified hydraulic hose assemblies within its global database. Presently, PTS is in use in more than 18 countries, making the system a powerful resource for global OEMs seeking an intelligent tagging, tracking and reporting solution for hydraulic hose assemblies and other fluid conveyance products.
The system features two key components. First are uniquely encoded tracking labels that incorporate visual data, barcodes and optional RFID (radio frequency identification) technology. The labels are generated by thermal printers and are affixed to the hose assembly at the time it is made. The second component is a web-based PTS software system that can be accessed securely through any computer, or via a mobile application for mobile devices.
Each tracking label code is permanently stored in the PTS database. The unique code identifies several key pieces of information about the hose assembly—for example, where and when it was made; what hose, fittings and accessories were used; and the length of the hose. Special OEM features may include details about the asset in which the assembly is installed as well as other information.
Today, maintenance and repair technicians must typically remove old hoses, travel to their local store and wait while the new assembly is made. Parker’s PTS dramatically expedites this process by making “call ahead” or “site delivery” service possible. The result is additional machine uptime that can dramatically improve the customer’s bottom line.
With PTS, customers can reference the code on the assembly tracking label and relay that information to their nearest Parker distributor, ParkerStore or mobile ParkerStore Hose Doctor. The Parker location can then prepare an identical replacement assembly before the customer arrives, or the ParkerStore Hose Doctor can deliver the finished assembly directly to the customer’s site.
PTS users also benefit from reporting tools that provide access to a variety of data that can be used to drive quality control, continuous improvement and scheduled maintenance programs. Furthermore, documentation of the original bill of materials ensures hose assembly replacement to exact OEM specifications and compliance with applicable industry and safety standards. This is particularly important for wind energy, oil and gas, mining, military, aerospace and other regulated industries.