Electrical failures largely avoidable

ELECTRICAL failures in processing plants can cost miners millions in lost production, though most are predictable and avoidable, according to EA Technology.
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EA Technology's UltraTEV Detector

Staff Reporter

“The cost of lost production from unexpected failures of electrical plant such as switchgear, transformers and cables is typically many times the cost of preventative testing and early intervention,” EA Australia managing director Dr Keith Beven said.

“Our focus is on keeping power assets working reliably to maintain production. The bonus is that managing electrical assets based on measured condition rather than with scheduled maintenance actually costs less and increases uptime.”

The company has developed a range of instruments for measuring partial discharge (PD) activity in live plants – small electrical discharges which give an accurate indication that equipment is starting to break down.

The ability to detect, locate, measure, monitor, record and analyse PD activity enables EA to predict when plant is likely to fail, and estimate its time to end of life.

EA’s product range is led by its UltraTEV instruments, which have twice won the UK’s highest industrial honour – the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation in 2011 and 2007 – and are the world’s leading multi-sensor PD measurement instruments, using a combination of ultrasonic sensors to measure surface PD and transient earth voltage (TEV) sensors to measure internal activity.

The company has also developed a complete condition-based risk management (CBRM) system, which enables asset managers to prioritise the replacement of plant, based on the probability and financial consequences of it failing.

Formed in 1966, EA has operations in Australia, China, the Middle East, Singapore, the UK and USA, together with more than 40 distribution partners globally.

Customers in 86 countries include electricity companies and operators of major power installations in the mining, petrochemicals, manufacturing, transport infrastructure and defence industries.

EA is exhibiting at AIMEX on stand B1066 on August 20-23 at Sydney Showground.

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