Why Monitor Critical Electrical Assets?

Critical electrical assets finally being treated as critical.

Electrical power is the life blood of most industrial processes and operations, yet for years core power distribution infrastructure has not seen the same investments into automation and connectivity as the processes they power. Today, periodic inspections of equipment provide little more than a snapshot in time, leaving these assets unmonitored for the vast majority of their operation life.  When assets go unmonitored, small issues can and do cascade into major failures.

The vast majority of plant electrical assets deployed today are at or over their typical life expectancy, and less than 5% of electrical assets have any form of digital monitoring. The leading cause of power outages is critical asset failure, and the resulting unplanned outage can cost industrial plants $500,000 per event. With an ROI of under twelve months, it is not surprising that there is a significant increase in the digitization and monitoring of power delivery assets. Emerson is hear to help.

Wireless Temperature Sensors

IntelliSAW™ passive wireless temperature sensors come in a verity of form factors for different asset types, applications, and voltages. All sensors rely on Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) technology, and thus are completely passive sensors requiring no power or battery for the life of the sensor. With no power electronic components to fail, the life expectancy of each sensor is 20+ years. SAW sensors are calibrated once at installation and require no subsequent maintenance for the life of the installation.


Partial Discharge Monitoring

Partial Discharge (PD) and Surface Discharge (SD) can lead to asset damage if left untreated.  PD and SD create ultra-high frequency (UHF) emission that are picked up by the Partial Discharge Air Interface. UHF emissions are correlated to the local power distribution frequency to identify signals that correspond to the peak amplitude of the 50hz or 60hz power cycle. PD and SD activity is tracked in real-time and put through algorithms that provide operators with actionable data.

Humidity and Ambient Temperature

Humidity and Ambient Temperature monitoring protects against condensation or intrusion of moisture into critical electrical assets. Humidity reduces the air dielectric integrity of air-insulated electrical equipment, and in mass can provide a path to ground. Real-time humidity alerts operators of failing heaters or fans and will immediately warn operators of the intrusion of water from failing gaskets or joints.

Data Collection and Analysis

Continuous monitoring allows for data capture and analysis that can identify subtle trends relating to asset health and allows for early warning alarms related to potential asset failures. Operators can use early warning indicators to drive preventative or predictive maintenance programs and reduce the risk of the most common types of asset failure.

Data Integration

IntelliSAW™ platform data is designed to be easily incorporated into head end data collection systems. Data is available via multiple common communication protocols including: IEC 61850, DNP3, Modbus, and TCP/IP.  Sensor data can also be shared via SSH and FTP. IntelliSAW data has been integrated into the OSISOFT PI, Ovation and PlantWeb environments.