Wednesday, January 6, 2010

News: Sensdata V-Belt Monitoring System


Rotherham firm Sensdata is tackling an industry-wide problem with a cost-effective monitoring system that enables the elimination of plant downtime, energy wastage and CO2 emissions.

Generally, the power developed by a standard electric motor is transferred to a load, for example, a fan, by connecting the motor to the fan by a V-belt, similar to the fan belt arrangement in a car engine.

The SensSlip V-Belt Monitoring System sees sensors attached to the rotating pulleys on a belt driven system, which monitor and determine the transmission system's running state. Live information on energy wastage, faults and slippage are then monitored and relayed to the operators.

Based on the Advanced Manufacturing Park in Rotherham, Sensdata worked with a team at Corus sites in South Yorkshire tasked with looking into production and energy management.

Corus' Stocksbridge site has a number of heat treatment furnaces, equipped with combustion air and fume extraction fans which are powered by large motors. They are fuelled by either natural gas or heavy fuel oil and all use V-belts.

Corus agreed to trial Sensdata's systems on the 80kW transmission drive, which was fitted to the exhaust fan for one of its two continuous reheating furnaces.

In just one sample period of monitoring the belt, over 4.3 days of continuous running, Sensdata confirmed that the transmission drive was only running at times at 82% efficiency. Accepted parameters within the industry are that V-belts should provide peak efficiency of between 95% and 98% when first installed.

This could equate to over £9,290 of energy wasted from just one V-belt drive system.

Chris Spenceley, energy services engineer at Corus, said: "We were expecting slippage between 3% and 20%. However we were surprised to see that we were getting up to 18% slippage without any other indication that the belts were not correctly adjusted.

"The staff at Sensdata has been great to work with. They came up with a great idea for a solution to an industry-wide problem. We found them to be flexible and responsive. They listened to our needs and adapted the monitoring system to meet them. We worked very well with Sensdata and are happy to continue working with them."

Sensdata website
Corus website



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