Fairlawn, OH - In a move to expand its services to the conveyor belt industry, Continental has acquired the Pinetown, South Africa company, Advanced Imaging Technologies (PTY) Ltd., which is known worldwide for x-ray and magnetic imaging-based systems used for early detection of damages in fabric and steel cord conveyor belting. “With this acquisition, we added technical sensing knowledge and R&D competence to strengthen our competence in the area of predictive maintenance,” said Hans-Jürgen Duensing, responsible for the ContiTech division on the Continental executive board. “At the same time, it is a strategic cornerstone to enlarge our service capabilities in industries such as mining.” Price of the purchase was not disclosed. Advanced Imaging Technologies (Pty.) Ltd. was founded in 2004 to provide scientific consulting services to South African industry and commerce, both in the private and public sectors. The company has specialized in developing innovative and cost-effective solutions to scientific and technical challenges experienced by large and small-scale industry and commerce. Continental, through its conveyor belt operations in Marysville, OH, has partnered with Advanced Imaging Technologies for many years on a multitude of projects. Conveyor belts keep the globalized cycle of mining and industry moving. “If a belt system experiences an extended downtime, the entire production chain often collapses, intensive maintenance and often repair work is required,” said Hannes Friederichsen, head of the Continental conveyor belt group. “Monitoring systems help our customers to detect damages early and thereby reduce downtimes and save maintenance costs.” Advanced Imaging Technologies (Pty.) Ltd. offers a wide variety of scientific and technical skills and expertise in the areas of image and signal processing, hardware and software development, advanced data analysis, x-ray imaging, embedded systems and system integration. “From the data obtained by the monitoring systems, our customers can benefit from innovative service offers,” said Friederichsen. “In the last years, AIT management and its dedicated and experienced seven-employee strong team did an excellent job. We are very pleased to welcome them to our family.” The technology developed by Advanced Imaging Technologies for the international bulk handling market uses innovative magnetic sensing technology which has been validated by extensive x-ray imaging measurements. It provides continuous online condition monitoring of steel cord-reinforced conveyor belting, and reduces the risk of belt failure by providing data that is used for timely planned maintenance, thus reducing costly downtime. This technology provides a high resolution, easy-to-interpret, magnetic image of damaged or broken steel cords for the verification of potential alarm conditions. At the same time, it gives operators real-time web interactive access to review the damage locations and their severity. In addition, the splice integrity and damage severity can be monitored over time so enabling a comparison with the historical data.