With a CAGR of 4.5% and an estimated 2027 value of more than $1.5 trillion, the worldwide spare parts market is bigger than ever. Fueled by automation and many other technologies of the day, we’re starting to see massive shifts in the way suppliers and manufacturers go about them. From companies looking to buy and sell industrial equipment online through eCommerce models to the onset of 3D printing technologies, these are exciting times for the industrial spare parts market and all players involved. So what does the future hold for industrial spare parts in light of this? You don’t need a crystal ball to get a glimpse of what lies ahead. Simply take a look at some of our predictions and trends below and you’ll be all caught up.
eCommerce and digitalization of the spare parts market
One of the technological advancements in the UAE as far as industrial spare parts are concerned is the shift toward an eCommerce model that is B2S or buyer-to-seller driven. Sure this is nothing new, but unlike many products sold online today, MRO spare parts have always taken the physical approach toward sales. Most have occurred via retailers or directly through manufacturers.
For instance, many are choosing to buy construction machinery parts online in the UAE using this approach on platforms such as Industbay. This cultivates a network where buyers and sellers can interact directly via modern social platforms such as WhatsApp, therefore reducing the role of retailers or middle persons in the entire sales process.
The result has been:
- Better deals on spare parts for buyers
- Higher commissions for suppliers of MRO spare parts
- Better communication and turnaround time
- Stronger buying relationships and loyalty
As the industrial spare parts market increasingly starts to make inroads online, such platforms will only get more customer-centric.
AI in predictive equipment maintenance and parts replacement
Before the onset of predictive analytics, manufacturers had to rely on guessing games and gut feeling in terms of anticipating their needs for replacement parts. These weren’t always in the ballpark, leading to wasted time and productivity lost to equipment downtime.
To get around these challenges and to more accurately predict when and what machine parts will need changing, industry players are now leveraging intelligent data analytics.
As an example, some companies are harnessing models driven by machine learning to analyze various data in real-time such as:
- Inventory levels and the number of spare parts therein
- Failure rates of various spare parts as obtained from historical records of machine performance
- Failure types and patterns in comparison with global data
Using the power of artificial intelligence, companies can now find failures before they take place. They can consequently restock inventories with adequate spare parts depending on part deficiencies as well as forecasted failure rates.
Three-dimensional printing of spare parts
While operation maintenance costs vary depending on the niche of a manufacturer, statistics indicate that over 60% of these expenses arise from the fees associated with the constant purchase of industrial spare parts.
The dire need to bring that figure down has made industrial machinery suppliers in UAE turn their attention to a more cost-efficient means of developing spare parts, namely 3D printing. It works much the same way as a traditional printer, only with more robust and comprehensive technology that enables the printing of three-dimensional objects designed in digital files. Using real-world materials, industrial 3-D printers can bring to life digital designs with excellent levels of accuracy to meet the immediate needs of a certain spare part.
Beyond the price tag factor, this technology has also become appealing for the following reasons:
- Reduced need to hold up money by stockpiling spare parts
- Lower downtime due to swift acquisition of spare parts as and when necessary
- High precision or accuracy of spare parts
- Fewer storage needs as spare parts can be stored in CAD designs waiting to be replicated at a moment’s notice
Modular or customized spare parts
We’ve discussed how 3-D printing will open the door for the use of CAD designs or digital files to create various spare parts. This and a combination of other technologies will lead us to a future where special parts are modular. In other words, they will be designed to meet exact customer or equipment needs.
Most spare parts exist in a standardized format of course depending on the:
- Type of industrial machinery
- Dimensions of the part
- Compatibility and other factors
Customization in the manufacture of spare parts will rise in popularity, as addressing precise needs will most certainly mean a lower frequency of replacement due to an extended life span. This will equate to more savings in terms of the maintenance budget.
Adoption of superior materials by spare parts manufacturers
The earth is full of precious raw materials that have found purpose in manufacturing spare parts. From steel to aluminum, heavy equipment companies in UAE are harnessing various substances depending on special properties required for certain use cases.
But man is far from discovering all our planet’s most precious elements, and as scientists experiment with new alloys, spare part materials are bound to evolve. Some recently discovered materials that could take on pivotal roles in the manufacturing industry include:
- Self-healing gel
- Platinum-gold alloy
- Composite metal forms
- Cellulose Nanofibers
As an example, some spare parts manufacturers are turning to platinum-gold alloys to create industrial components that can withstand extreme conditions. This compound is substantiated as 100 times stronger than steel according to scientific research, alongside other game-changing materials such as spider silk and titanium fluoride phosphate.
Keep ahead of the curve with Industbay
Other important mentions that will also be a part of the technological advancements in the industrial spare parts market in the UAE include cybersecurity and digital twins. Moreover, RPA or robotic process automation will also take change particularly when it comes to providing labor and managing spare parts warehouses. This technology has long been involved in other aspects of manufacturing but it will take on more roles in the maintenance department as well. Would you like to stay ahead of the latest happenings to ensure your maintenance teams always take advantage of the latest trends? Be sure to regularly check in on our website, Industbay, so you never miss a thing.