Archive | September, 2012

258

7:23 pm
September 14, 2012
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Don't Procrastinate…Innovate!: American Ingenuity Is Alive And Kicking

ken bannisterJay Carney, the current White House Press Secretary, recently took the opportunity to state, “The United States of America is still the most powerful economy in the world. It is an incredible engine for creativity and innovation. And it has the smartest, most effective workforce in the world.” Carney’s assessment was spot on.

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205

6:40 pm
September 14, 2012
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Electrical-Safety Sense: Be On The Safe Side With PESDs

Companies across the U.S. and Canada are investing time and resources in establishing effective NFPA 70E/CSA Z462 programs to stem the risk of arc flash and other electrical hazards. Design changes are implemented with the purpose of keeping workers on the safe side of electrical panels and far away from the dangerous voltage needed to create an arc flash.

As part of those design changes, permanent electrical safety devices (PESDs)—external devices permanently mounted to electrical systems that, directly or indirectly, reduce the risk of arc flash and/or shock hazard—have become the de-facto standard to which panel designers are turning: PESDs allow them to create safer conditions for workers who are performing mechanical and electrical lock-out/tag-out and at the same time help increase the productivity of those workers. 

What others are saying
“Some companies view electrical safety as an expense,” says Dennis Doody, Project Manager with Vilter Manufacturing in Cudahy, WI, “but our motor starters actually reduce that expense. We use permanent electrical safety devices, separate enclosures and an HMI to provide the operator with tools to perform tasks outside of the enclosure rather than have to interact with energized components. By doing this, we keep employees away from energized electrical equipment and perform tasks safely on the outside of the enclosures.” 

The time and money saved as a result of Vilter including PESDs in its designs will continue to generate returns on initial investments: Safety will be increased. Bottom lines will be helped. 

Clarifying the business case
By keeping workers on the safe side of panels, organizations reduce their risk for arc flash—a phenomenon that could cost tens of millions of dollars and more. Those that do experience arc flash incidents will likely find themselves spending significant time and money contending with numerous interested parties and/or associated issues. That list could include, but wouldn’t necessarily be limited to: OSHA, unions, lawsuits, personal issues, employee re-training, increased insurance premiums, even having to reference the accident on bids for future work. The consequences that can result due to such situations detract from a company’s growth, deplete its essential resources and redirect its focus away from progress. Considered in these terms, being on the safe side/keeping workers on the safe side of your next lock-out/tag-out clearly makes good business sense. MT

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177

6:25 pm
September 14, 2012
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Automation Insider: Automation’s Focus On Helping Maintenance

garymintchellYou’ll probably read this column around the time of ISA Automation Week, in Orlando, FL, Sept. 24-27. This annual conference is a gathering of automation, controls and instrumentation engineers, managers and technicians in the process industries. Among the highlights of this year’s program is a demonstration of data interoperability from the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) functions on through, ultimately, the Operations and Maintenance functions. The Open O&M group (www.mimosa.org) has been working toward this event for several years.

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383

6:21 pm
September 14, 2012
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Upfront Motor Planning: ‘Measure Twice, Cut Once’

motor-decisions-matterMany of us can remember hearing that old “measure twice, cut once” proverb. Old as it may be, it still offers an important reminder: It’s faster and less expensive to plan ahead than to make a mistake and do the job twice. Unfortunately, some mistakes are more costly than others. For a facility manager, operating without a plan for important motor-driven equipment (the largest single source of electricity consumption in the U.S. industrial sector)[1] could be causing excessively high electricity bills, or worse. You could be moving toward unanticipated motor failure, downtime and a series of other costly consequences. 

How can you ‘measure twice?’ 
Planning ahead may be easier than you think. The Motor Decisions MatterSM (MDM) campaign describes the basics of motor management and planning in its Motor Planning Kit (MPK). Simple to use, this kit is available to the public on the MDM Website, www.motorsmatter.org. 

The MPK is designed to help industrial plant managers develop electric-motor management plans for motor-driven equipment in their facilities. Such plans are effective tools for improving plant productivity and reliability, while reducing operating costs and conserving energy. Use of the MPK can help readers take advantage of the bottom-line benefits of effective motor management [2]. Originally released in 2001, the newly revised MPK features: 

  • Charts that illustrate the importance of pur-chasing motors based on life-cycle costs
  • Motor management success stories
  • Information on high-efficiency motors and motor-system optimization through the use of ASDs in appropriate applications
  • Expanded section on the “building blocks” of motor management
  • Lists of motor management resources, including regional resources as of 2012

Since effective motor management and use of energy-efficient equipment can save electricity and reduce downtime, the MPK makes it easy to follow the “measure twice, cut once” advice. Visit MDM online to find this tool and other resources designed to help you plan ahead.

New to MDM’s Website 

A summary of all 15 MDM motor management tools and resources can now be easily found using the MDM Product List. The summary provides a snapshot of MDM resources, brief descriptions and links to each resource on the site. Visit us online and start proactively managing your motor systems today! MT

1. U.S. Department of Energy: Industrial Technologies Program, “Improving Motor and Drive System Performance, “ 2008. 

2. Motor management is a set of ongoing policies and practices that help industrial facilities effectively manage their motor populations based on life cycle costing, repair-replace decisions and proactive planning.

The Motor Decisions Matter (MDM) campaign is managed by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE), a North American nonprofit organization that promotes energy-saving products, equipment and technologies. For further information, contact MDM staff at mdminfo@cee1.org  or (617) 589-3949.

 

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223

6:14 pm
September 14, 2012
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Motor Shaft Voltages Kill Bearings

Problem

Variable frequency drives (VFDs) make commercial HVAC systems, automated assembly lines and other processes more energy efficient. But they induce currents that can damage motor bearings. The resulting downtime and costly repairs can wipe out energy savings and severely diminish the reliability of an entire system. Now, with the AEGIS® Shaft Voltage Test Kit, you can find out which motors are at risk and install AEGIS® rings to protect them.

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123

6:14 pm
September 14, 2012
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The Reliability Files

0111reliability1

Motor Shaft Voltages Kill Bearings

Problem
Variable frequency drives (VFDs) make commercial HVAC systems, automated assembly lines and other processes more energy efficient. But they induce currents that can damage motor bearings. The resulting downtime and costly repairs can wipe out energy savings and severely diminish the reliability of an entire system. Now, with the AEGIS® Shaft Voltage Test Kit, you can find out which motors are at risk and install AEGIS® rings to protect them.

0912relfiles1

Solution
With the AEGIS® Shaft Voltage Test Kit you can test every VFD-controlled motor in an entire plant, office building or other facility to confirm the threat of bearing damage. A collaboration between Electro Static Technology (EST) and Fluke Corporation, the test kit contains a voltage probe tip, an extension rod and a portable oscilloscope to measure the potentially destructive voltages on a motor’s shaft. The probe’s special tip contains conductive microfibers that enable fast, easy and accurate measurements. EST makes the tip and extension rod, while Fluke makes the probe and F190 Series ScopeMeter.

Without mitigation, voltages can build up on the motor shaft, discharging repeatedly through bearings and causing EDM pitting and fluting. Fluting (a washboard-like pattern in the bearing race from concentrated pitting) can produce vibration and noise, but by that time bearing failure is often imminent. The AEGIS® Shaft Voltage Test Kit is handy for maintenance/testing personnel—anyone who needs to determine and convince others that shaft voltages either are or are not present at levels high enough to
erode bearings.

How can such damage be prevented? If significant shaft voltages are detected, the most effective bearing-protection device available today is the AEGIS® Bearing Protection Ring, which safely redirects harmful currents away from the bearings to ground. Developed by EST, the maintenance-free AEGIS® Bearing Protection Ring outperforms conventional spring-pressure grounding brushes, which corrode, become clogged with debris and wear out quickly, as well as ceramic-coated bearings, which can shift damage to connected equipment. It even provides bearing protection for so-called “inverter-duty” motors, which offer beefed-up insulation to protect windings, but nothing to guard against bearing damage, and transforms them into “true inverter-duty motors” with full protection of windings and bearings.

0912relfiles2smallClick to enlarge.Proven bearing protection…
The AEGIS® ring has already proven itself in over half a million applications. Key to the ring’s success are the patented conductive microfibers arranged along its entire inner circumference, com-pletely surrounding the motor shaft—a critical design requirement.

As preventive maintenance, the AEGIS® rings can be easily installed on any NEMA or IEC motor regardless of shaft size, horsepower or end-bell protrusion, using brackets or conductive epoxy. A new split universal mounting kit includes a split version of the ring that allows retrofitting without decoupling the attached equipment—the hinged halves open on one side to fit over the motor shaft. For larger motors, generators and turbines with shafts up to 30” in diameter, EST offers the maintenance-free AEGIS® iPRO Bearing Protection Ring, also available in a split design.

Return On Investment
By diverting damaging currents safely to ground, AEGIS® grounding rings extend motor life, locking in energy savings to make systems sustainable and truly “green.”

For more information or for a free in-plant motor shaft voltage test, contact www.est-aegis.com. MT

Electro Static Technology
Mechanic Falls, ME

 

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