PERPETUO is developed and proposed by "Gefond for a long Life Industry."
Founded in 1994, Gefond represents leading suppliers in the diecasting industry and distributes technologically advanced equipment for light alloy foundries. Gefond’s challenge is to keep up with change by trying to anticipate it; to support manufacturing industry trends with innovative technical solutions, focusing on digitization and sustainability; to expand service offerings; and to push training to increase productivity.
Gefond’s strategic vision on materialized in five divisions: Gefond Products, Gefond Software, Gefond Technology, Gefond Academy, and Gefond Service.
Represents and distributes consumables and technological equipment for the non-ferrous alloy foundry sector with a focus on the use of energy-saving technologies that guarantee concrete and documentable benefits such as reduced cycle time, longer mold life, quality of parts produced and energy savings, and consequently reduced costs and increased productivity in diecasting islands. In particular, he represents the following brands in Italy: temperature control units (HPDC by Gefond), lubricators (WOLLIN and AED), metering furnaces (FOUNDRY 4), crucible furnaces (MMP), crucibles (Morgan), melting furnaces (KROWN), state-of-the-art laser markers (LASERAX), and adiabatic coolers to replace evaporative towers (FRIGEL).
It is responsible for researching and proposing, in collaboration with digital development centers, solutions that can improve production efficiency and lengthen plant life. PERPETUO, the artificial intelligence software for predictive maintenance in foundries, intuitive and easy to use, the only one capable of dialoguing with any machine and peripheral in the die-casting island anywhere in the world; Digital Factory, the first artificial intelligence solution for optimizing production processes; Castle, the simulation software designed specifically for foundry mold making; Automata, the management application dedicated to contract manufacturing built specifically for engineering and steel companies.
Researches, develops and distributes innovative and sustainable advanced diecasting production systems. The patent for the Greencasting temperature controller in the HPDC by Gefond line, which saves up to 85 percent in electricity, is one example, as is the development of an augmented reality system-a tool used extensively by our technicians to make interventions without moving from the office. The flagship is the creation of PERPETUO. Sustainability and digitalization are the common thread running through Gefond’s Research and Technology Development division.
Understanding customer needs and being flexible are the core principles that drive GEFOND Service. In addition to the product, it provides a number of additional services with the aim of improving and simplifying the work of the end user. It provides technologists for process optimization with special reference to thermoregulation and minimal lubrication, prepares a tailor-made analysis of energy consumption costs by providing an accurate calculation of savings derived from the use of our technologies, offers rental service on some of its equipment, immediate assistance and elimination of travel costs through technical service with augmented reality.
Offers a training program to keep facilities in top condition at all times. The content of the proposed courses is geared toward plant operation, process optimization and maintenance management.
ANFIA Service, a service company of ANFIA-the National Association of Automotive Industry Chains-which is one of the largest trade associations in Italy associated with Confindustria, has chosen Gefond as its partner. Gefond Academy and Anfia Service will work jointly to promote training initiatives in the Automotive sector, with a focus on predictive maintenance.
Sustainability and digitization
For a more environmentally friendly production process and to provide higher service levels and improve safety. The predictive process safely minimizes operating costs, making plants more efficient and maintenance-optimized. This approach also makes it possible to reduce the carbon footprint of industrial facilities, thereby proactively and intentionally adhering to the decarbonization measures needed to combat ongoing climate change.
Discover the full potential of PERPETUO
Interview with Tiziana Tronci, Board Member & New Products Development Gefond
The idea came about somewhat by accident. At the Aluminium 2018 trade show, I heard about Predictive Maintenance. With the curiosity that accompanies me in my professional life, I decided to look into this topic. Through research and through intense and assiduous dialogues and discussions with Gefond technicians, I have focused on the fact that most of our customers ask for breakdown maintenance, emergency interventions, under stress due to machine downtime, production stoppages, and the need for spare parts that are not always in stock but have to be ordered and have a technical lead time. I realized that operating in this way makes it very difficult to optimize work and be more efficient. I tried to see if there were any tools that would allow the customer to reduce the number of calls for outage intervention. As I studied other industries, I realized the need for our industry to adapt as well by working on failure prevention and the resulting decrease in downtime.
We had originally planned to apply Perpetuo only to the plants of the companies we represent. We organized a tour to our suppliers in Italy and abroad who showed great interest and technical readiness on the project. However, we understood that the builders were not interested in being at the forefront, but that it would have to be Gefond who would support this challenge in terms of investment of time, energy, human and economic resources. Costly investment for a company like ours. We were faced with a choice. We could either abandon this dream or courageously bet and invest in the project.
Giving up is not part of my character, and from that moment the idea took another breath: we decided to have an open system that could read any machine and die-casting peripheral.
It was a vision like when you have a daydream but are aware of the difficulty of realization. I never lost the will and desire to try to get as close as possible. A path and strategy was mapped out with my team to try to achieve an ambitious outcome, and together we identified the tools most consistent with this goal, the tools that the new millennium and digital development make available to us. And that took the right partner. We found it in Claudio Vivante and his T4SM. With this software house, we have applied tools developed for other industries to the needs of the foundry: machine learning algorithms. This was made possible by the combination of our two expertise.
Gefond combines two aspects in this journey: a vision of the future of the cutting-edge industry and nearly 30 years of experience and expertise in foundry work both from a business perspective in equipment sales and in technical service, installation and spare parts. The combination of this forward-looking entrepreneurial vision and experience is leading to change, to the transformation of a business model that shifts the focus to customer and market needs. A product-related service proposition is thus added to the sale of machinery. The perception we have today is that the customer needs solutions in addition to the purchase of the physical good. We turned this demand into training, remote technical assistance with augmented reality, and Perpetual software.
Industry 4.0 has led to the purchase of machines that collect data but are rarely monitored, analyzed and interconnected. Gefond gives value to the collected data that are analyzed and used for predictive maintenance. Perpetual was also born out of this awareness.
A cultural change is needed. Taking care of machinery. Not just owning them but caring for them. This is the mission of Gefond for a long life industry.
Making a modular solution. A software that has predictive maintenance as its peculiarity and value, but can also guide the customer in preventive maintenance. Flexibility. Every customer has his or her own Achilles’ heel, weakness, and needs. Perpetual is not a closed system that always works the same way. When we sit around a table, we talk to maintenance technicians, to the IT department, to ownership, to the purchasing department. Each of these stakeholders plays a part and has different needs. We collect them, process them, and come up with solutions built together. This is a team effort. Only in this way can we provide a tailor-made product, a solution that fits perfectly.
The goal is to connect as many machines as possible. In fact, with a self-learning process based on artificial intelligence algorithms, the system is able to become more and more reliable through the connection of plants, recording and interconnection of countless data. To date, with about 150 machines already connected to Perpetuo, a reduction in annual downtime of at least 35 percent can be estimated. Although the promotion of Perpetuo began in the midst of a health emergency, the market response has been very positive. In addition, Gefond’s position of neutrality in the market and careful management of data privacy has enabled us to build important technical and commercial partnerships with manufacturers of competitive die-casting machines and peripherals. More and more manufacturers are showing interest in predictive maintenance because they have realized that by entering the Perpetual system, they can optimize service to their customers and learn more about the operation of their plants. With Perpetual software, we are demonstrating that today the difference in competitiveness is made by enhancing the predictive power of data.