Manufacturers face many types of challenges, from process problems to equipment issues. A challenge that often flies under the radar until it’s too late is when an issue arises with the critical software and servers that support factory operations. It’s inconvenient if a process tool goes down but if your MES goes down, the entire factory goes with it.
Because your factory’s uptime is critical, you most likely have metrics in place to monitor it, as well as quality programs in place to improve it. Keeping product moving through the factory and processing correctly are keys to your company’s profitability. Your manufacturing software systems all play a key role in productivity and quality too, and this is true when they’re working –and even when they aren’t. As much as we hate to think of it, sometimes a server goes down or a network has an issue. Sometimes power is accidentally shut down to the whole server room because of a tool install happening nearby. The result is unplanned downtime, sometimes for the entire factory. This has a significant business impact.
For a modest low-volume wafer fab, just one hour of unplanned downtime can have a $10,000 impact on the company’s bottom line. For a medium-volume fab it’s more like $100,000. For a state-of-the art high-volume wafer fab, it can be as much as $1,000,000. It’s essential then, to find ways to reduce or even avoid unplanned downtime for your manufacturing software systems. SmartFactory Monitor can help you do just that.
SmartFactory Monitor is a real-time monitoring software solution that allows you to identify problems, facilitating corrective action before any of your production systems are impacted. In its most basic form, it provides a customizable, easy-to-digest dashboard showing the current state of your production systems. This makes it almost seamless to see and send a notification when a problem occurs.
One of its key features is customizability, allowing you to create custom visualizations to display performance trends over time. Its predictive analytics capabilities allow for detection of performance anomalies before they become production impacts.
SmartFactory Monitor runs on modest hardware in a small process footprint using your choice of OS. It is pre-integrated with other products in the SmartFactory software portfolio and keeps track of all your manufacturing systems—the applications, databases and both Windows and Linux servers. The system monitors, in real time, system performance logs, error logs, event logs, application logs, system logs, server logs – anything and everything that can provide a clue to system performance and health.
Everything is aggregated into Splunk, software that captures, indexes, and correlates real-time data that can then be used to generate automated notifications and create visualizations to highlight trends and spot problems. It also can be used as training data for machine learning algorithms that enable predictive analytics so issues can be identified and resolved before they become problems in the factory.
Pre-built dashboards are available to get you up and running quickly, monitoring all your system logs. Using Splunk, you can easily visualize system performance and detect trends, anomalies, and outliers using sophisticated prediction algorithms developed by Applied Materials engineers.
SmartFactory Monitor provides a comprehensive set of production-monitoring capabilities to address many of the key support-system challenges that manufacturers encounter. The primary objective is to reduce unplanned factory downtime by decreasing the time it takes to identify and resolve system problems. Ultimately, it can help prevent factory-impacting problems altogether through performance trend analysis and predictive analytics.