- Buyer's Guide
Dingo Maintenance Systems was formed in 1991 by a core of professionals who previously created oil analysis software for a major coal mine and electric power generation facility in Queensland, Australia. Dingo has since become a leading independent supplier of oil analysis software solutions in Australia, Southeast Asia and North America. Attention to detail and customer requirements has enabled Dingo to provide solutions for a range of applications from small manufacturing facilities to large, remote sites with in-house oil analysis laboratories and multiple clients. Dingo's commitment to oil analysis users has resulted in constant improvement of software and services that focus on delivering real maintenance benefits.
Developing an effective oil analysis information management program requires more than the simple acquisition of a software program. Staff education and training, database set-up and implementation and on-going support all play a vital role. While increased administrative efficiency is a benefit of a properly implemented program, improved oil analysis effectiveness is where the real pay-off lies. Better decisions based upon better information lead to reduced failure rates and optimized oil change and maintenance actions. For instance, the Chicago Transit Authority operates 1,878 buses and generates 12,000 samples per year. They justified the purchase of software, implementation and training from Dingo on reduction of administrative time alone. But the real pay-off from improved maintenance effectiveness comes later.
FleetOil for Windows® is the preferred platform of most oil analysis software solutions from Dingo. It runs on Windows 3.1, 95, 98 and NT, is single or multi-user capable on most LANs and has an open database design that can be accessed directly for custom querying and reporting. Quality documentation and a user-friendly interface enable easy software configuration. However, most customers opt for professional assistance with this, as it ensures the database is configured for optimal long-term performance. FleetOil provides many tools to make life simpler and more rewarding for oil analysis end users and service providers.
One-Touch Sample Retrieval: There is no third-party communication software to deal with. Pressing one button will dial your lab, retrieve results and flag abnormal samples. Scheduled Auto-Dial makes retrieval of results essentially "hands-free."
Lab Independence: FleetOil is designed from the ground up to be lab independent. If an organization changes labs or works with multiple labs, the user need only add the appropriate data drivers. The onsite database remains the same and re-training and implementation costs are avoided. Results may be easily collected from several different labs into FleetOil. Sample history can be pre-loaded so trends can be utilized immediately.
User-Controlled Alarms: While most modern labs provide excellent analysis services, interpretation can be somewhat generic as they deal with many customers from a broad range of industries and high sample volumes. Augmenting this service with onsite tools for detecting abnormal situations can be highly beneficial. FleetOil allows limits to be set globally, for an equipment group or for specific equipment. Limits can also be calculated statistically from actual site data, allowing the definition of "abnormal" to reflect conditions on site.
Exceptions Management: All abnormal samples create an entry in the exceptions list. Exceptions remain on the list until addressed by maintenance personnel, ensuring nothing slips through the cracks. Notes can be added referencing work orders, planned corrective action or interpretation comments. Figure 1 shows actioned items with a check and non-actioned items with a cross. Alarm data is shown together with lab analyst comments and easily configurable trends, allowing maintenance decisions to be made quickly.
Figure 1: Exceptions Management
Rates of Change: Raw result data can be confusing if considered without the effects of oil age or oil additions.
Abnormal situations may be easily masked and normal situations may falsely cause concern. FleetOil automatically calculates rate-of-change data, accounting for the effects of make-up oil and oil age data. The resulting trends show the rate of increase or decrease of the test results, providing a much clearer picture of what is happening. Alarm limits can also be set on rate-of-change data.
Group Trending: Trends for a single equipment item may be compared with trends for the whole group. This feature simplifies the immediate comparison and assessment of "normality". Multiple groups may also be compared with each other. This feature enables quick experiments to justify changes in maintenance policy. For example, a test group can be established for comparison to the general population to determine the viability of extending oil drain intervals. Figure 2 shows the iron results for an individual engine compared to iron results for all engines in the group.
Figure 2: Group Trending Graph
Dingo is currently working
on the next generation of oil analysis software products. Exciting developments
include 32-bit client/server versions, improved trend analysis tools, increased
ease of use and flexibility.
For more information about Dingo's products and services, contact:
Dingo Maintenance Systems
9100 Watson Rd, Suite 201
St Louis MO 63126
(314) 729 0111