The use of machinery, equipment or production lines involves the need for adaptation and / or modernization.
ADJUSTMENT OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT
Adaptation of machines, devices or production lines are activities that arise, for example, from applicable regulations or standards.
Both EU and national regulations impose on the employer an obligation to adapt the machines to the minimum requirements concerning health and safety at work. This obligation applies to all machines purchased before January 1, 2003, in such cases, the adjustment should take place until January 1, 2006. If, for whatever reason, the adjustment has not been carried out yet, the employer is obliged to carry it out as soon as possible.
The basis of all measures to adapt is proper documentation. In the absence of it, the entrepreneur is obliged to find the manufacturer of the machine in order to obtain documentation in order to be able to adapt the machine in accordance with the regulation. There shall be no service or work by employees on machines which do not comply safety requirements.
From the point of view of responsibility for adapting machines to safety requirements, two different directives apply:
* if the machine was produced, e.g. in 2006, until the end of December 2009 – Directive 98/37 / EC was in force.
ADJUSTMENT OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT – process stages
- 1. Choosing a specialist company or creation of team of specialists in the company, including mechanics, health and safety specialist.
- 2. Assessment of conformity of the machine in use with regard to minimum safety requirements, according to the regulation, indication of nonconformities and determination of ways to solve them.
- 3. Making the necessary changes on the machine previously determined by the team.
- 4. Preparation of documentation confirming the machine’s compliance with the minimum safety requirements.
- 5. This documentation should be kept by the employer for 5 years from the date of completion of the inspection.
- 6. The documentation can also be routinely verified by the inspection and supervision authorities, as well as when determining the circumstances of the causes of accidents at work.
MODERNIZATION OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT
Modernization is a concept broader than “adaptation”, including changes in the functionality of machines, restoring their efficiency, modernizing or making them more efficient.
MODERNIZATION OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT – comprehensive service
Modernization works should cover the full range of services: from design to implementation. Then the investor can be sure that the contracting company will have full control over the whole process.
Therefore, it is important to entrust the design of machine and equipment adaptations to experts, with extensive specialist experience in the field of modernization of machines and production lines. This will allow for precise planning of deadlines and the time of their implementation.
It is important that the team performing the modernization, while defining the concept, take into account not only the assumptions presented by the project managers, but also the convenience of the operator’s work or the access for repairs carried out by maintenance.
MODERNIZATION OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT – when to carry out?
- 1. A machine operating properly may require some modernization as a result of:
- a. Amendments to the rules governing its use
- b. Changes in the manufacturer’s needs
- c. Withdrawal from production of components on which the machine works
- d. Changes to regulations specifying the parameters of manufactured goods
- e. Newer technologies available to improve performance
- 2. A machine that has failed may be upgraded to replace damaged components with new models, thereby extending its service life and efficiency.
Modernization of machines, equipment and production lines can be made in terms of safety as well as functional.
MODERNIZATION OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT – in terms of safety, it includes:
- Modifying safety systems
- Modifying machine fences and safety guards
- Adding light curtains, safety laser scanners and other safety equipment
The necessity of modernization in terms of safety may result from a deep functional modernization, which caused new risk on the machine by adding new machine elements or integrated with a new machine or an unfinished machine. In this case, the above situation may cause the need to adapt the old machine to the essential safety requirements specified in the Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC.
MODERNIZATION OF LINES, MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT – functional in terms of:
- Modification and comprehensive replacement of machine control systems according to the Machinery Directive
- Extending the functionality of machines
- Expansion of electrical, pneumatic or hydraulic systems
- Replacement of drives with modern servo drives
- Adding robots
- Exchanging vision control stations
- Renewing old machines
- Modification of product transport systems – chain, belt and roller conveyors
- Improved machine performance and quality
- Making and expanding SCADA systems
Modernizations are becoming a necessity. Not only because of obsolete elements, but more and more often to increase work efficiency.