Inconsistent Node/Interlace due to Clogged Interlace Jet – Case Study

Customer overview

A large PET fiber producer making high value textile products through a DTY process had acquired the Instrumar Fiber System (IFS) to help them improve quality, reduce costs, and expand markets.

Event Reported by Instrumar Fiber System

The IFS sensors identified intermittent changes in node count (or interlace) on one particular position. Based on the plant’s quality criteria, Instrumar’s PlantView software then downgraded the package, recorded the defect type and where in the package it occurred, and flagged it for further testing by the lab. Based on the data signatures, Instrumar also indicated the probable root cause of these fluctuations as being a malfunctioning air jet.

Maintenance Team Findings

From the real-time alert issued by the Instrumar Fiber System, the maintenance team investigated and determined that the jet was partially clogged leading to inconsistency in interlace air pressure and causing variations in noding. Subsequent lab testing confirmed the package was outside of acceptable specifications.

Cost Avoided/Efficiency Gained

• Due to the intermittent nature of the air pressure changes, and the lack of visible problems on the machine, this event could have continued for a number of days before being detected, had the Instrumar Fiber System not identified the issue.

• From the real-time alerts, the maintenance team was able to quickly replace the jet, thus avoiding substantial waste in raw materials, labour, and other inputs.

• As the node drops were sporadic, lab testing may not have even identified a problem unless a drop occurred at the very end of the package that was used for testing. The first indication of a problem could very well have come from a customer claim, resulting in financial penalties, and reputational damage to the plant.

Customer Feedback

"We love Instrumar for the fact that it alerts us in real-time to our critical quality issues. A faulty jet can go undetected for significant periods of time, likely resulting in customer claims down the road. Having IFS monitoring our production in real time saves us a lot of time, money and makes a big difference to our quality and efficiency numbers.”

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