3D Rendering of a Pump Room for Visual Management

How to Implement Visual Management in Control Systems

3d Renderings help create Visual Management

August 2020

What is Visual Management? The definition from the Lean Enterprise Institute (LEI) of visual management is the placement in plain view of all tools, parts, production activities, and indicators of production system performance, so the status of the system can be understood at a glance by everyone involved. Visual management allows us to communicate without words and share information quickly. It’s difficult to fix what you can’t see.

How can you create a control system that has visual management tools built-in?

There are a few ways to create visual management systems inside of a control system. The easiest or more uncomplicated step is to add alarms that pop up on the screen. Color-coded alarms can alert if an area needs attention. Another way is to create a diagram of the system and add flashing colors where an issue pops up. Often it’s green for running, active, or functional, red for stop, and various other colors like yellow for warnings.

The most visual way is to create 3D renderings. These renderings can be used as a background for the HMI, where additional information, labels, and animations can be placed over it.

With effective communication, realistic versions can be created without onsite visits by marking up screenshots and site photos. The 3D renderings help provide or bring to life real looking visual management tools for maintenance and operation managers.

For example, the motors at a project in Lexington at the Town Branch Wastewater Treatment Plant were 3D rendered. The motors were made in multiple colors so that they can be used to overlay the default image to show if the status of the device changes. When something changes color that indicates to the operator that there may be an issue to resolve, in this case, they can quickly identify if anything isn’t flowing smoothly.

Implementing visual tools, reviewing, and maintain them will assist with the managing process and the success of your facility.

Learn more about the ControlTouch projects at Town Branch and West Hickman.