How Investing in Environmental Monitoring Can Save You Time, Money and Headaches

Vijay Vasudevan

In part one of this blog series, I introduced the Glassbeam EVM (Environmental Variable Monitoring) solution and explained the importance of using the EVM solution to collect environmental telemetry data such as compressor power, water inlet and outlet temperature, room humidity, and temperature readings every few seconds. In this blog, I will explain how investing in EVM can prevent medical imaging equipment failure, reduce the costs of running imaging centers, and assist service personnel in diagnosing problems.

Prevent Equipment Failures (Saving Time)

The biggest value that the EVM solutions provide is the ability to prevent equipment failures by monitoring the environmental telemetry data in rooms that house all imaging support equipment.   Glassbeam creates threshold operational values, which are constantly monitored. Whenever the EVM detects a value out of the operational range, an alarm is sent to management and service personnel, alerting them to immediately resolve this equipment issue before it affects the main imaging asset equipment.

Power Monitoring – The EVM solution monitors the power levels of imaging support equipment, such as chillers. If a chiller loses power, then the cooling of imaging equipment will not be possible, which will lead to problems such as the loss of inert gases or even damage to the imaging equipment. The moment a power loss is detected, EVM will push out alerts, allowing service personnel to resolve the issues before any immediate damage to the imaging equipment takes place.

Environmental Monitoring – The EVM solution monitors environmental factors such as the humidity and temperature of equipment rooms. EVM will report on changing conditions, notifying management and service personnel if the humidity or the temperature of the support room pushes past the operational thresholds. For example, if there a humidity reading was taken at 90% – which is past the operational threshold – EVM would notify management and service personnel to investigate why the humidity is so high. The water content in the air could definitely affect the electronics in the support rooms, which would directly affect and damage the imaging asset equipment.

Equipment Monitoring – The EVM solution monitors the temperatures of the water entering (inlet) and exiting (outlet) the imaging assets, and calculates the delta between the inlet and outlet. Alerts are sent if there are irregular changes to the delta, inlet, or outlet temperatures. Any changes to these temperatures could be an indicator that the support systems are not operating. Thus, service personnel can begin diagnostics to prevent any damages.

Reduce costs (Saving Money)

Investing in the EVM solution will lead to an immediate reduction of high-cost spending. This is because the EVM acts as the first line of defense in an imaging environment, by predicting future problems with the imaging assets before the problems manifest.

What if a critical component of an imaging asset failed? The following additional costs would be required to bring the asset back online:

  • Ordering an emergency component
  • Paying for overnight delivery
  • Scheduling emergency maintenance/installation of the new component
  • Canceling appointments due to the downtime

All of the extra costs are lost revenue, which could be avoided by implementing the EVM solution.  Service personnel can report any potential problems to management before they take place, allowing management to avoid ordering emergency replacement parts, alongside with costly overnight deliveries, and schedule downtime/equipment maintenance during non-operational hours.

Assist Service Personal with Root Cause Analysis (Preventing Headaches)

EVM contains a whole new set of data that can enhance the Glassbeam CLEAN solution. There have been scenarios where an imaging asset has had a failure and upon troubleshooting, the machine logs could not point to any problems, leaving the service teams unsure of why the failure occurred. Service personnel can crosscheck EVM sensor logs with the imaging asset machine logs, thus EVM can be used with CLEAN for Root Cause Analysis.

Crosschecking Machine Data – Consider this scenario: service personnel begins to investigate why an MRI scanner failure occurred. Unfortunately, there is nothing in the MRI machine logs that point to the problem. However, upon checking the EVM data, the service personnel noticed a change in temperature shortly before the MRI problems began. Upon investigation, service teams could trace back that the root cause of the problem was in a faulty component in the chiller after an odd environmental reading had taken place. Essentially, if something stopped working, the service staff can cross check with data from EVM to see if there was any correlation.

The return on investment of implementing a Glassbeam EVM solution can immediately be seen through proactive detection of equipment failures, additional data sets for service personnel, and the avoidance of unexpected revenue losses. Reach out to a Glassbeam team member to find out more.