Inverter with advanced condition monitoring
Mitsubishi Electric has extended the diagnostics capabilities of variable speed drives by integrating smart condition monitoring (SCM) technology in a new version of the FR-A800 inverter series. The additional capability comes via the integration of the SCM Kit-1 into the FR-A800-E inverters. The pre-configured, plug-and-play solution includes the FAG SmartCheck vibration sensor from e-Factory Alliance partner Schaeffler. Combined with the PLC function, also integrated within the FR-A800-E models of inverter, it provides a complete drive-based solution for preventative maintenance.
This integrated approach to monitoring the health of individual assets combines traffic-light indication of the asset, plus more detailed analysis within the FR-A800-E series. Within the inverters operating temperature and vibration feedback from the SmartCheck sensor is combined with the monitoring of a full range of other external parameters, including speed, voltage and current information. Detailed diagnoses can be monitored remotely, or displayed on the FR-A800-E inverters’ integrated screen.
In the event of a deterioration in operating conditions or a likely impending failure, the system will recommend countermeasures via clear text messages, or by forwarding them to higher-level systems. This means that maintenance personnel do not need any special diagnostics expertise in order to be able to identify faults. They can observe the drive messages, take the necessary actions and schedule any maintenance work required. As a result, downtime is minimised and system availability maximised.
Within the FR-A800-E models, the PLC function acts as the sensor controller for the SmartCheck sensor, eliminating the need for a separate controller. The sensor itself can be added to assets where required, being easily retrofitted to the fixing bolts of rotating machine components such as motors, shaft bearings and gearboxes. Up to two further SmartCheck sensors can be added and wired over Ethernet to FR-A800-E type inverters as needed, and cabling requirements are minimised through the use of Power-over-Ethernet (PoE), so that the vibration sensor can be fully integrated using only a single cable.
An app suitable for use with mobile devices, including iPhones and iPads, is also available and this expands the range of motor control and monitoring functions, from simple motor control functions through to managing alarms and operating parameters remotely. In addition, status information from the SCM solution is still shown on the display as clear text.