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Press release
Factory of the future: SPIE Sud-Ouest revolutionises industrial maintenance with augmented reality

Toulouse, 19 June 2015 – SPIE Sud-Ouest, a regional multi-technical services subsidiary of the SPIE Group, has unveiled its new IdBleam industrial maintenance offering. This innovative system, featuring a new type of 3D tag developed by the Toulouse-based UBleam startup firm, offers SPIE Sud-Ouest’s customers time savings and optimised equipment traceability.

Simplifying industrial maintenance

Developed by SPIE Sud-Ouest, IdBleam was designed in response to growing demand from many industrial players wanting to dematerialise and simplify maintenance processes for their installations. The time spent on identifying equipment, searching for documents and related procedures adds up to hundreds of hours per person per year. Furthermore, using non-digitised documentation, such as maintenance report, can result in errors in data entry.

The Idbleam offering proposed by SPIE Sud-Ouest reduces maintenance work times, increases the reliability of follow-up, and improves safety for personnel and installations. It also provides customers with access in real time to the history of their equipment and its preventive and corrective maintenance, notably with regard to the regulatory requirements managed by SPIE Sud-Ouest.

Adapting to difficult industrial environments

After conducting a detailed diagnosis of the customer’s installations (number of items of equipment, observation of the maintenance process, time spent entering data, and problems encountered, etc.), SPIE Sud-Ouest proposes that specific items of equipment should be fitted with tags used by the 3D detection process developed by its partner, the UBleam startup firm. These tags, specially designed at SPIE Sud-Ouest’s request, can be printed or embossed on any substrate. The Ubleam tag technology is able to withstand difficult environments and offers unprecedented scanning performances compared with other technologies, such as QR codes. Tags can be scanned from several metres away at a view angle of up to 120° (as against 90° for QR codes).

Augmented reality platform

SPIE Sud-Ouest configures the man-machine interface and connection with the computerised maintenance management system database on the basis of options such as display, feedback and alerts.

The augmented reality interface provides technicians with access to all the necessary data related to the equipment’s maintenance, including updated technical documentation, drawings, safety information, regulatory status of equipment in real time, lists of operations to be performed and mandatory inspections. The interface can also manage requests for maintenance action, orders for replacement parts and requests for assistance. “SPIE Sud-Ouest is using its expertise in maintenance methods to innovate by linking up with the world of startups,” points out Guillaume Roubichou, industry business manager at SPIE Sud-Ouest. “In this way, we are providing solutions for the connected, digital factory of the future, offering greater responsiveness and efficiency.”

A simple example of the system’s use

As soon as the need for maintenance intervention is issued, a SPIE Sud-Ouest technician is notified – by tablet or smartphone – of the identity of the customer concerned, the type of intervention required and the work to be done on the equipment concerned. On arrival at the customer plant and before starting any maintenance operation, the technician scans the equipment’s tag to obtain all its latest relevant data which is integrated and updated upstream by SPIE Sud-Ouest teams. The technician identifies the right technical solution and switches the equipment to “maintenance” mode. When the maintenance operation has been completed, the technician’s report can be sent directly to the customer which is informed in real time of the nature of the work done.

“This maintenance offer was developed on the basis of close collaboration between SPIE Sud-Ouest and the Ubleam startup after we suggested a new application of their technology,” explains industry business manager Guillaume Roubichou. “Thanks to our expertise in maintenance engineering, we are able to provide our customers with this outstanding, innovative solution which offers considerable time savings and greatly enhances equipment traceability.”

This technology, which is now included in SPIE Sud-Ouest’s industrial maintenance offering, could be rolled out for all its business lines.


SPIE Sud-Ouest

Aurélie Antajan
Communications manager
Tel.: +33 (0)5 61 36 78 24
Mob: +33 (0)