Analysis of a time based and corrective maintenance system for a sugar producing company

Chindondondo, Brian ; Nyanga, Lungile ; Van Der Merwe, Andre Francois ; Mupinga, Tapiwa ; Mhlanga, Samson (2014)

CITATION: Chindondondo, B., et al. 2014. Analysis of a time based and corrective maintenance system for a sugar producing company. In SAIIE26 Proceedings, 14–16 July 2014, Muldersdrift, South Africa.

The original publication is available at http://conferences.sun.ac.za/index.php/saiie

Conference Paper

The Southern Africa sugar producers’ market is under threat from Brazilian sugar, with the latter’s sugar landing in Southern African countries - Zimbabwe in particular – at 75% of the selling price of local producers. This paper outlines an investigation of the current maintenance systems of a Zimbabwean sugar producer and its shortcomings, with a view of optimization. Research has shown that maintenance can contribute between 15 to 75% of production costs, thus playing a critical role in product pricing and consequently competition. Maintenance records and interviews to maintenance personnel from the company were used to extract data relevant to the study. A bottleneck asset in the production line was chosen as a subject to measure the impact of the current maintenance system in cost terms. The study shows that the company is using a hybrid of time based and corrective maintenance. The paper also shows that the current maintenance philosophy resulted in downtime of eighty (80) hours on the subject asset over a four (4) year period, that translated to an equivalent of USD1.9 million in potential revenue lost; which downtime could have been avoided with better maintenance methods. The paper concludes by recommending the introduction of Condition Based Maintenance on the subject asset as an alternative to optimize the maintenance function of the company.

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