Much of the data managed within the business systems such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) originates from the plant floor. This includes data such as quality, raw material receipts, finished good receipts, shipments, and inventories. Without an interface to a plant-floor data acquisition system, this information typically must be keyed into the top-level systems.
This leaves room for errors and data inconsistencies and in addition, delays information getting to the people and systems that need it. Having this information available in the top-floor from the shop floor in a timely manner has great advantages. eQUILL (Electronic Quality Information and Logistics Logsheets) system is an effort to provide such an interface that enables the operator data
to be collected to a central database and allows various business systems for effective data collection and being updated with accurate data in real time.
Besides importance of the access of real-time data, plant history is a valuable corporate asset as well. Having a central database provides the ability to capture and store thousands of data points related to the process plant. By having this, it is easy to recreate a plant's history for future analysis. eQUILL generates data for end-users and software applications quickly and efficiently. It helps personnel to easily implement plant and corporate initiatives such as process improvement, Total Quality Control (TQC), and predictive maintenance by unifying plant data into a single repository where any individual in a company can view and analyze the same information.
Within a manufacturing facility, there are several methods currently being used to capture process and production data. In many areas, the data is captured on paper that inherently causes inefficiencies including:
In addition to the paper records, there are numerous applications used for capturing data including the Honeywell TDCs, GLIMS and other custom built applications.
eQuill is designed so that the user can generate “customized” operator and foreman log sheets with each data point in the log sheets identified as to how and when it needs to be captured. It has proven to be a useful tool in assisting engineering, production and quality departments in the following ways: