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Carbon Neutrality Through Color Sensor

Demonstration of high-efficiency maintenance through visualization of equipment condition with Daikin Industries, Ltd.

omronOMRON Corporation has released its B5WC Color Sensor for industrial embedding that detects slight color changes and differences. It also monitors real-time oil deterioration in hydraulic equipment using colors to monitor the condition of the oil. Providing maintenance at optimal timing is indispensable for manufacturers. In addition, minimizing production losses within a manufacturing site contributes to carbon neutrality. The B5WC offers an innovative solution to these issues indicating OMRON’s strong direction of co-creating solutions with customers to solve social issues.

There are several issues that impact manufacturing sites. Oil contamination is frequently a cause of failure of industrial machinery and hydraulic equipment. Maintenance personnel are relied upon to conduct a visual check for such contamination, often by performing periodic inspection and part replacement based on their intuition, tricks, and experience. Often production stoppage losses due to sudden equipment breakdown are incurred by inconsistent judgment from each person in charge. In addition, delays in inspection timing have been a longstanding challenge. An increasing need is also being sensed for higher efficiency in maintenance and remote monitoring due to a severe shortage of labor and limited mobility caused by the COVID pandemic. However, size and cost of additional components have stood in the way of solving the problem.

OMRON “B5WC” sensor can be embedded in the equipment that can quantitatively monitor oil deterioration based on color changes. Utilizing OMRON’s strengths in sensing technology and optical design technology, the new product can be easily integrated into the equipment because of its compact size (W:40mm x D:8.4mm x H:15.9mm) and communication method (I2C). This sensor helps customers to remotely monitor equipment in deterioration in real-time thereby leading to the visualization of the equipment and the reduction of man-hours required for inspection and maintenance. It also offers solutions to solving problems faced by the industrial machinery and hydraulic equipment industries through highly efficient and systematic maintenance.

In preparation for its introduction, the B5WC has been undergoing field tests since April 2018 on the “Eco-Rich R” hybrid hydraulic system provided by the Oil Hydraulics Division of Daikin Industries, Ltd. to solve issues through co-creation by the two companies.

The Oil Hydraulics Division of Daikin Industries, Ltd. supports automation and energy conservation of industrial machinery, which plays a fundamental role in manufacturing, through hydraulic systems with advanced energy-saving performance that utilize motor and inverter technologies cultivated in the air conditioning business. Hydraulic fluid in the hydraulic system was inspected and changed about once a month by plant maintenance personnel. By combining the knowledge and expertise of the two companies, a solution has been created that visualizes the state of oil deterioration in hydraulic equipment and achieves maintenance at the optimum time through unified management in the plant’s centralized control system. Furthermore, it contributes to the realization of carbon neutrality by minimizing losses associated with production stoppage and energy consumption due to sudden failures of hydraulic equipment caused by oil deterioration.


Nitisha Dubey

I am a Journalist with a post graduate degree in Journalism & Mass Communication. I love reading non-fiction books, exploring different destinations and varieties of cuisines. Biographies and historical movies are few favourites.

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