Siemens Links Geared Motors and Motion Control to Create the Perfect Combination

Posted: Thursday 28th January 2016

One-stop-shop solution brings significant benefits to Siemens customers.

Siemens has improved its offering to customers by more closely integrating some of its specialist UK divisions. Head of Siemens Drives and Motion Control, Andy Hodgson, said it made operational sense in a highly competitive environment to link Geared Motors with Motion Control, as this enabled Siemens to offer complete design solutions to customers‘ – totally integrated automation (TIA) and integrated drive systems (IDS).

Geared motors are some of the most competitively priced units within the industrial drive train – which comprises motors, gearboxes, couplings and controls. Siemens competitors often buy Siemens control systems to use with their own geared motors as they do not manufacture all components themselves, unlike SIemens.

As Andy commented: “At Siemens we are able to provide the complete drive system including PLCs, drives and motors, and take away the customer’s concerns about sourcing different components through different manufacturers and then hoping these components will function well together. We’re removing the gamble from the equation and providing the secure assurance of a properly designed system, with all its associated benefits of higher and more reliable performance over a longer timespan.“

Reflecting the success of this integrated approach, Siemens has just won four projects from a major operator in the food retail sector, providing over 1000 of its Simogear geared motors plus Simatic controls for a fully automated warehouse conveying system.

In another recent project, Siemens is not only providing the integrated drive systems (IDS), but is also providing condition monitoring in an environment where reliability is crucial for guaranteed production. In looking for a supplier that could provide 99.9 per cent uptime, the customer tested three machines fitted with condition monitoring over a three-month period. They were tested for vibration, heat, bearing wear, and all achieved full productivity during this time. One machine was identified as having a bearing issue, which was subsequently repaired over a weekend, proving the value that condition monitoring brings to predictive maintenance. The customer is now in the process of rolling out condition monitoring throughout its operation, which will enable it to buy fewer machines because the existing machines now deliver more uptime.

New appointment

While Andy Hodgson heads up Siemens Drives and Motion Control, Geared Motors has a new UK business manager: Julie Ferguson, whose role incorporates balancing the growing geared motors business that Siemens has in the UK with its assembly centre for geared motors, based in Leeds. Build times have been shortened through the use of lean techniques and response times improved for both new unit supply and service support, enabling customers to buy fewer machines to guarantee delivery, thereby controlling costs and helping to win new business.

Julie has worked for Siemens since 2005, and prior to that for Flender Power Transmission, bringing a total of 27 years of experience to the job. Closely involved with integrating Flender into Siemens, Julie’s role now includes some support in Europe, and strategic work aimed at doubling Siemens‘ geared motor business within the next three years. The new Simogear range of standard geared motors is replacing the older Motox range, and Siemens‘ IDS strategy is raising its competitive advantages considerably.

Julie commented on her new role: “It’s a very exciting time for geared motors, with our new Simogear range providing not only a high-quality standalone product, but also the benefits of being fully compatible with all the other Siemens components in the drive train. This provides great reassurance to our customers and is already being reflected in the business we are now doing.“

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