Brad Parsons

Maintenance & Energy Costs, How to Reduce Them.

I get lots of positive comments from my blogs, which is awesome, and recently had an email asking what exactly MOVUS does? So here goes… (It’s a little techie but I’ll keep it to a minimum).

Firstly, our motivation

There are 1.6 Billion electric motors on the planet. They consume around 43% of the world’s electricity. More than 67% are used by industry.

Most machines run until they fail. Others are inspected once a month or even once a year. Inspections require a technician to drive across town, or even the country. Many machines are also in difficult or unsafe environments. Some of our customers have technicians that do 1,000 km’s per week! Surely this is bad for traffic, our environment and fuel bill?

Condition monitoring is the science of looking for machine failures. It has largely remained unchanged for years.

We are changing the game, big time.

To explain, first little engineering, geek speak…

There are essentially five levels of condition monitoring maturity. Drastically simplified, it goes like this (most common and expensive first):

  1. Run to fail – when it breaks, fix it
  2. Scheduled inspection – on a regular basis, do a manual inspection of the machine
  3. Preventative – ahead of time, replace the parts that you believe might fail
  4. Condition based – when you know something is wrong, fix it
  5. Predictive – when the early warning signs of failure present, fix what is going to fail

The first three rely heavily on the skill of individuals to plan and execute. The last two are dependant on technology-assisted decision making. It’s easy to tell which is best. Sadly less than 5% of machines fall into the last two.

At MOVUS, we enable #4 (and are working on #5) – (shhh…keep that to yourself). 

Why change ? Here are the figures

Across the life of a machine, energy and maintenance account for 2/3 of total costs (purchase price is roughly 10%). When machines are operated inefficiently, when they are failing or oversized for the job, they use more energy (duh!). Reactive maintenance is 5 times more costly than proactive maintenance (no surprise there). Many accidents occur when work is rushed or unplanned. Finally, maintenance accounts for about 25-40% of opex in heavy asset industries (that’s huge).

We believe there is a massive opportunity to change this. How ?



This little device (about the size of a hockey puck) can be placed on all types of machines (the list in the graphic above is a good start). It automatically learns the machines’ normal behaviour and when it starts to go downhill, it tells you. Simple? We think so, and that’s why we want everyone to have one, so we’ve priced it at less than a cup of coffee a day.

So, if you do want one or want to talk more about what we do, let me know.


This article was first published on LinkedIn on 7 September 2016.