Through quick identification of open-circuit events caused by short circuits and overloads, the InVision system from Cooper Bussmann can help reduce downtime and increase productivity.

“Fuses and circuit breakers protect machinery and employees. Now they can protect the bottom line too,” says Bob Bender, vice president marketing for St. Louis-based Cooper Bussmann.

He cites a recent study of manufacturing facilities, which revealed that an open-circuit event resulted in an average of 41 minutes of downtime, including 11 minutes to notify maintenance and 24 minutes for troubleshooting. Downtime costs can range from $300,000 to millions of dollars per site, per hour, according to the study. In addition to the idle workforce, downtime causes disruption to an integrated supply chain and the loss of scrapped work in process.

To combat the problem, an alert containing the exact location, the correct replacement fuse and the appropriate level of personal protective equipment (PPE) is automatically phoned, e-mailed or faxed to maintenance via the InVision system.

The system includes components such as intelligent fuse and circuit monitors, which are battery-powered devices that watch the circuits and transmit any change in status to the system routers. Wireless mesh routers provide redundant, self-healing connectivity between the system’s monitors and a gateway that encrypts data received and sends it to secure servers via the Internet. An Internet-based application displays the status of monitored circuits and allows configuration of alert escalation and trending reports. Summary reports and trend analyses that identify problem circuits requiring remedial action also can be generated by the system, which stores open-circuit alert data.

A web-based demonstration is available at