Strathclyde AFRC helps transform manufacturing insurance for 4.0 era
4 Dec 2019
The University of Strathclyde Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRC) has teamed up with a leading insurance firm to apply the latest data analytics to machinery quotes for manufacturers.
The model developed for Edinburgh based firm Inrobin analyses real time data from industrial machinery. This enables insurers to offer competitive premium rates based on individual usage of equipment based on factors such as frequency of machine maintenance and operational efficiency.
AFRC says manufacturers will benefit from risk prevention and tailored insurance, while in depth data analysis will provide a deeper understanding of how to run machinery more efficiently, improve maintenance schedules and prevent breakdowns.
Inrobin worked with the AFRC’s bid writing team to secure Innovate UK funding and its data scientists will collaborate on a trial system. The centre will provide expertise in IIoT and connectivity and an extensive list of manufacturing contacts.
At present, insurance providers assume that two companies buying the same machine should pay the same premium based on the same life expectancy. The new model will offer a more tailored pricing approach – analysing each machine’s specific behaviour and machine maintenance in real time to adjust rates.
Jose-Maria Guerra, chief executive officer at Inrobin, said: “Using IIoT we can track life expectancy and failure expectations within the machine in real time to offer manufacturers a premium that fits their needs, ensuring that they have the right type of coverage.
“Working with AFRC's cutting-edge equipment throughout the project allows us to build up an understanding of failure and test certain things that would not be possible within a manufacturing environment.
In the way that sensible drivers who are looking after their vehicles are rewarded with a cheaper premium, manufacturers sensibly using their equipment can take out insurance that reflects their use
Danny McMahon, metrology and digital manufacturing team lead, Strathclyde AFRC
He said his company had spoken to global insurance companies that had registered interest and would work on a pilot project with a major European provider later this year.
Danny McMahon, metrology and digital manufacturing team lead at the AFRC, compared Inrobin’s model to car insurers’ use of black box insurance.
“In the way that sensible drivers who are looking after their vehicles are rewarded with a cheaper premium, manufacturers sensibly using their equipment can take out insurance that reflects their use rather than an industry average,” he commented.
“According to current insurance models, a manufacturer who uses a machine to its full capacity every day without regular maintenance might be on the exact same insurance premium as a company that’s using it at 25% or 50% capacity, while also servicing their machinery each month. With the new model, insurance companies will offer a more competitive service while manufacturers will maintain their machinery more efficiently.
“The AFRC will act as a transition to market for Inrobin. Following on from helping with the initial bid, we’ll use our state-of-the-art machinery to trial the system and offer machinery expertise to push exploitation forward helping the business to grow.”