Blaser Swisslube AG utilizes process visualization to save money and protect the environment

GE Fanuc Software Solutions Key To Manufacturing, Filling and Storing Cooling Lubricant With Skill and Precision

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., May 10, 2007 -- Headquartered in Hasle-Rüegsau, Switzerland, the family-owned Blaser Swisslube AG has been producing and selling cooling lubricant used in the metalworking industry, worldwide for 70 years. At facilities in the Swiss Emmental region approximately 100,000 liters of (cooling) lubricant, cutting oil and grease are produced each day. To support the individual production steps and networking needed, Blaser Swisslube has employed GE Fanuc Automation’s Proficy HMI/SCADA CIMPLICITY visualization system in the individual production areas, such as the mixing, filling, transport system or the power station. GE Fanuc’s Proficy Historian saves all process data, such as temperatures, filling levels, added ingredients, along with all raw material codes, etc. And ultimately, thanks to its web-based design, the Proficy Real-Time Information Portal enables access to all historical and on-line data globally. The use of real-time visualization and control systems during the manufacturing of the cooling lubricant saves money and makes an important contribution in protecting the environment.

“Using GE Fanuc Proficy software has enabled us to demonstrably increase productivity and significantly improve process quality,” reports Martin Siegenthaler who is responsible for the process automation and system support at Blaser Swisslube AG. “In addition, the software facilitates the daily work of our staff. However, using the system in no way diminishes the importance of their jobs.”

Visualizations make Blaser Swisslube more productive in many areas including the filling system in the lubricant plant. The barrels to be filled are delivered by truck, transferred onto pallets and automatically transported to the filling station using various transfer points equipped with conveyor belts. If faults occurred, the system manager needed to connect his laptop computer to the system control (PLC) and analyze the corresponding inputs/outputs until he located the problem. This was considerably time-consuming and resulted in significant downtime. Today, the visualization allows the manager to obtain detailed information using the causes of the alarms.

For real-time and historical data analysis, the Proficy Historian server is a robust and effective storage system for the accumulated system data and constitutes the heart of the process visualization at the production company. If required, vast quantities of historical or real-time data and operating information can be quickly and easily recorded, archived and distributed. And, GE Fanuc’s Proficy Real-Time Information Portal allows production data to be called up, analyzed and visualized. The portal provides a web-based overview of important parameters and allows remote access.

“That web access provides an advantage if a problem with the power station occurs at night or on the weekend,” said Siegenthaler. “In certain circumstances, I don’t even have to drive to the plant, but can simply solve the problem on my computer at home using a VPN and by calling the building attendant.”

At the same time, Siegenthaler has constant access to the historical and current process data from his office workplace during working hours and can monitor current processes or make future decisions based on the historical data. “A plant outage here would come at a high cost to the company and cause supply shortages. Therefore, we have integrated a CIMPLICITY/Historian redundancy solution that will drastically increase the security in this respect,” said Siegenthaler.

On-site support provided by the Balsthal-based B+I Automation AG, the official Swiss sales partner of GE Fanuc, is one reason why the company chose GE Fanuc.

“We have been working with their employees for years and have always received immediate, reliable support,” Siegenthaler reports. “And since we believe service and product availability are equally important as the purchase price itself, the decision in the matter was made relatively easily. We of course also looked at rival products. In doing so, we realized that no other products were as convenient to program and configure as CIMPLICITY.”

Siegenthaler sees no major concerns in pending upgrading tasks. Konrad Bussmann from the B+I Automation AG who has installed and upgraded numerous systems with GE Fanuc products confirmed: “Thanks to the open architecture, client/server setup and the modularity of the product range, upgrading individual components can be done without any problems.”

About GE Fanuc Automation

GE Fanuc Automation Corporation, a joint venture between GE and FANUC LTD of Japan, delivers automation hardware and software designed to help users reduce costs, increase efficiency and enhance profitability. With solutions and services for virtually every industrial segment, GE Fanuc Automation provides a diverse array of capabilities and products, including controllers, embedded systems, advanced software, motion control, CNCs, operator interfaces, industrial computers, and lasers. Headquartered in Charlottesville, VA, GE Fanuc Automation is a part of GE Industrial and combines the diverse global strengths of the GE family with the local presence customers need to design, develop and maintain their automation investments.

For more information, visit or contact: GE Fanuc Information Center, P.O. Box 8106, Charlottesville, VA 22906, Phone: (800) GE FANUC (800-433-2682), Fax: 434-978-5205, e-mail:

GE Fanuc Automation
Elli Holman, 508-698-7456 

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