Case Study - Hawker Richardson Delivers Remote Commissioning of Four Mounters


Case Study - Hawker Richardson Delivers Remote Commissioning of Four Mounters

To enable Tait Communications to incorporate their new mounters into their SMT lines, Hawker Richardson were able to offer commissioning remotely, via innovative software provided by Yamaha, ensuring disruption was minimised during Coronavirus travel restrictions.

Tait Communications is a designer, innovator and manufacturer of critical communication equipment, typically consisting of radios, of which the majority are exported all around the world from their facility in Christchurch, New Zealand.

The printed circuit board (PCB) in the radios is a crucial part of the assembly and Tait Communications currently run three surface mount technology (SMT) lines that together can place more than a million components per day. Containing a wide range of component types, from very large ICs, connectors, and shields, to very small 0201 capacitors, the boards are assembled accurately and quickly by the lines consisting of printers, mounters and ovens, overseen by a team of expert engineers.

Tait Communications’ Requirement and Challenge

As part of Tait Communications’ drive for continual improvement, investment in four new YSM20R Yamaha mounters was necessary to keep the lines performing at maximum efficiency.


The challenge fell on Hawker Richardson (supplier of the mounters) and Tait Communications to commission the new mounters into the production lines, minimising disruption and downtime. What is more, the service engineers at Hawker Richardson were unable to travel to New Zealand because of the Coronavirus pandemic restrictions in place.

The Solution

Despite the challenges, the commissioning for the new mounters was successfully achieved entirely remotely, thanks to hard work from the engineers at Tait Communications in preparing for commissioning, and from the service team at Hawker Richardson.

Remote Machine Support Software

The unique support software solution from Yamaha allows Hawker Richardson to remotely access the mounters with a high level of security, minimising any cybersecurity threats. This software had only just been updated when Tait Communications needed to do their installation, so they were the first organisation to trial this with Hawker Richardson.  Once the software was released and the hardware kit that went with it arrived at Tait, the commissioning took only the same amount of time as a regular in-person install.


The diagram on the next page provides a visual representation of how the Service Engineer securely connects to the machine through cloud services and through the firewall, to access the system required for commissioning.

The mounters can be checked remotely for their condition and status as well as for licence activation and for the log review process.

Afterwards, it enables the engineer to remotely go through the adjustment and calibration procedure, which requires a comprehensive list of checks including everything from the production line transfer check, to the camera adjustments, and vacuum level adjustment, as well as the feeder exchange height measurement.

Setting up commissioining remotely sm

With the success of the remote commissioning leading the way to improved processes, and potentially a more efficient way of working, ongoing support can also be initiated through the software saving downtime. This provides Tait Communications reassurance that they can be supported even without a Hawker Richardson Service Engineer physically on the premises.

Dean Mischewski, Manufacturing Engineering Manager at Tait Communications was happy that the mounters could be commissioned remotely:

“We were really pleased with how the commissioning went. We were the first customers to work with Hawker Richardson through this process entirely remotely, so there was some extra preparation work required to ensure everything would go smoothly. But once we began, it took the standard amount of time despite there being no Hawker Richardson engineers on-site.

Dean goes on to say: “Although the YSM20R mounters were much newer than our existing machines, and therefore came with many new or different features, careful preparation and execution ensured the commissioning went to plan, so our lines were up and running again with minimum disruption. As well as delivering a successful installation, the process provided a good learning opportunity for our own engineers. When we work together very openly and collaboratively with our support providers we can get a great outcome.”

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