How to consider market uncertainties in maintenance policy selection?

Industries that rely their production output on physical assets cope with the trade-off between maximizing operational time while minimizing maintenance to avoid equipment breakdowns. In an uncertain market environment, it is not said that the optimal maintenance policy would remain fixed.

To study the issue, we reproduce a simplified mine environment employing a virtual counterpart that resembles a digital twin (DT) of the system allowing us to study the effects of maintenance planning decisions on the overall profitability. Different system configurations are tested, and the probability to run the mine profitably is estimated with all the combinations of system configuration and maintenance policy in an uncertain market environment.

Michele Urbani

Doctoral Student, University of Trento/
LBM, LUT University

Jyrki Savolainen

Post-doc. Researcher, LBM,
LUT University

The case study presented shows that the proposed methodology is feasible, although the dimensionality of results emerging from model complexity is found to be an issue.

Finally, we discuss the implications of complex DT-models in industrial settings and how they can be used to improve managerial decision-making processes.

Savolainen, J., & Urbani, M., 2021, Maintenance optimization for a multi-unit system with digital twin simulation – Example from the mining industry. Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing.


Maintenance optimization, Digital twin, Simulation, Optimization