A sustainable lubrication program begins with a strong foundation in lubricant, selection, storage, handling, application, contamination control, analysis and disposal. Based on years of experience, Noria’s ASCEND™ framework provides an effective tool for evaluating the current state your lubrication process against world class standards. It provides an intuitive way to prioritize implementation steps into an action plan, addressing the elements with the most impact on machine reliability first.

The ASCEND model is comprised of three Management Levels, divided into six weighted Lubrication Program Stages, which contain 40 critical lubrication Elements.

Management Levels

Platform (P)
This outer ring of the ASCEND chart contains elements that are considered the foundation of the program. They are crucial to the lubrication program and have priority in implementation.

Program Management (M)
The middle ring contains elements that enable personnel management processes, resources, scheduling and monitoring of lubrication tasks. These elements are everyday activities and are based on the elements of the Platform level.

Key Performance Indicators (K)
The inner ring contains elements that evaluate performance in each of the stages of the lubrication process, help keep the program within its objectives, identify deviations from the goals, and establish rewards.

Lubrication Process Stages

The lubrication process begins with the selection of the proper lubricant for machinery considering the operational environment. The lubricant must be received and stored at the plant until it is time to apply it to the machinery. When this is required, it is handled and transferred to intermediate containers to be applied to machinery, where it must be maintained and kept contaminant-free. It should be analyzed and monitored during its life to determine when to change depending on the degradation of its properties, and then disposed in an environmentally friendly way.

According to this sequence, ASCEND classifies a lubrication program into six stages. These six stages consist of forty critical elements of a lubrication program:

  • Lubricant Selection
  • Reception and Storage
  • Handling and Application
  • Contamination Control
  • Lubricant Analysis
  • Environmental Disposal

Maturity Grade

Adapted from the DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control) improvement cycle which is a common tool in Six Sigma projects, a standard of best practice is determined. By comparing the current state of each element against best practice, the implementation maturity grade is identified.

ASCEND defines three maturity levels based on the deviations of the actual condition with respect to best practice and their importance. Each maturity level is represented by a color that provides a view of the opportunities for improvement and the elements that are aligned with best practice.

Not Implemented / Deficient Implementation
Basic Implementation / Implementation in Progress
Implemented Element

The Journey to Lubrication Excellence

An easy to understand maturity grade provides a quick visual representation of the progress of your lubrication program transformation.