Digitalisation. What's that got to do with electric motors?
Standing in front of this industrial motor, before presenting Integrated Drive Systems [IDS] from Siemens over the last couple of years, a common question would be "what's in that box, the one with the blue light in it"? All will be revealed is the answer...., as we launch into the benefits of using the IDS approach to optimizing your industrial drive train.
Of recent, I'd say another common question is "what's digitalisation got to do with motors?" Both questions and answers are related.
Those of you in the know will be saying correctly, what's in the box is a condition monitoring system. It's been fitted to this Low Voltage SIMOTICS induction motor and is there to extract vital operating information from the motor during operation via sensors such as vibration and temperature data. Data which can be used to trend and report back to the operator with the main aim of proving a means to improve plant availability and reduce costly down time. The data is manipulated digitally and can be visualized on an HMI locally or broadcast remotely.
Electric motors consume much of the energy on your average process industry plant; and drive many of the critical applications. Lose an ID Fan in a biomass plant or an inclined conveyor in your aggregates quarry and the downtime costs can be immense.
New innovations from Siemens mean you can now consider your key electric motors themselves as sensors.
Even without a condition monitoring system.
With the event of Smart Motors, you can begin to extract live production data in a cost effective way, straight from the shop floor. Taking data straight to cloud based operating systems like MindSphere, and running apps to let let you know in good time exactly when to take action.
Another innovative way to get vital info such as technical data; service logbook and maintenance recommendations straight from the motor is via the new "electronic nameplates" attached to the SIMOTICS SD range. Simply scan the QR code embedded on the motor's nameplate direct from your [digital] smart phone and the info is downloaded straight to the device.
You can see an example of a Siemens motor app here from the ios app store:-SIMOTICS Digital Data App on Apple App Store
So there's no getting away from digitalisation. It brings many possibilities to optimize and future proof your process.
And plenty to do with motors, right?
Phil Banks, Integrated Drive Systems