Limerick company Rusal Aughinish has been announced as the overall winner of this year’s National Maintenance and Asset Management Awards (MEETA). The awards, which are organised by the Engineers Ireland MEETA Society, highlight and reward the ingenuity shown by those in maintenance and asset management in providing value to their companies.
Rusal Aughinish is a chemical processing plant that produces 1.8 million tonnes of alumina annually from over 4 million tonnes of ore (Bauxite). The process is continuous, energy intensive and requires a large maintenance effort.
The company’s awards entry was entitled ‘Maintenance at Aughinish – Evolution to Revolution’ and it sought to develop a culture of proactive and predictive maintenance in the facility. The aim was to ‘make performance visible’ – allowing it to be monitored, controlled and improved throughout the organisation.
Rusal Aughinish’s maintenance co-ordinator Lorcan Keyes said the challenge was to make proactive and predictive maintenance visible and subject to control and development. “Some of the key aspects of the project were: how we’ve refocused on the principles of proactive and predictive maintenance through leveraging the necessary migration of information systems to network and web-based platforms,” he said, “along with the behavioural impacts of the use of key performance indicators [KPIs] and the use of visualisation to enhance quality of work and work processes.
“The Computerised Maintenance Management System was also modernised. Web and intranet-based systems have been used to make information available and to allow input from all users.” KPIs have been developed and presented in visual formats throughout the organisation, but the biggest achievement has been to make the performance visible, allowing it to be monitored, controlled and improved.
Other winners included PepsiCo, which received the award for Overall Maintenance Health And Safety for the entry ‘Racking Dynamics’; Nypro Ireland, which won the Management Award for ‘Toolroom Operations Improvement’; and The Flat Bread Company, which won the Technology Award for its entry ‘Sweat Your Asset with Automation!’.
Shane Fogarty from Cork Institute of Technology received the 2013 MEETA Student Award, sponsored by ESS Ltd, for his project on ‘Process Improvement and Electrostatic Analysis of Thermoforming Machine’. In addition to the awards, Certificates of Maintenance Excellence were presented to Richard Daly from Dublin Institute of Technology and Patrick Byrnes from Cork Institute of Technology.
Engineers Ireland’s director general, John Power, said the range of entries to the 2013 MEETA Awards demonstrated the world-class quality of Irish engineers and technicians. “They’re making a very valuable contribution to the organisations in which they work and the engineering profession,” he added.
The winners were announced at the annual Engineers Ireland MEETA Awards and Conference, which took place on Thursday 21 and Friday 22 November in Engineers Ireland headquarters in 22 Clyde Road, Dublin. The awards are sponsored by PMI Software Ltd and the Health & Safety Authority.