New technology and automation tools will enhance the efficiency of the wind industry
Published: 13 Mar 2018 By Matt Cook
The improvements in condition monitoring technology have transformed the tools available for forecasting maintenance and efficiency within the wind industry. Digitialisation and technology have made the industry smarter, cost-effective and overall more efficient. With the rise of Industry 4.0, automation and additional data exchange tools, it is quite evident that this is only the beginning of the true potential technology can offer the sector.
Combining digital technology into one single platform enables options for improvements in efficiency, overall lifespan and more importantly reduce downtime, the overall energy consumption, and total costs.
The development of remote monitoring technology is vital for the wind industry as it can eliminate potential breakdowns or outages to specific wind energy facilities and at the same time improve the lifespan of new and existing equipment. These tools are essential in improving the reliability of the wind industry as it continues to expand worldwide.
Technology sensors are capable of recording and processing ‘condition-related’ information in real-time. For example, using a particular service that measures vibrations allows a maintenance technician to measure the conditions of individual bearings or larger systems from anywhere via a remote internet system. The technician will then receive a notification if there is an damage noted in the analysis and can contact other technicians for assistance via remote analysis.
New technology such as Predictive Maintenance 4.0 for Wind energy will link current technology with new digital equipment to create a more effective and digital production and monitoring process for the industry. Predictive Maintenance 4.0 for wind offers a variety of predictive maintenance techniques such as Drivetrain 4.0 which assists with monitoring the reliability and lifespan of machinery used in energy plants. The latest technology from Drivetrain 4.0 includes a microservice which focuses more specifically on optimum machine capacity, longer operational times, predictive data maintenance and reducing the operating costs.
The new micro-services also include calculating the remaining operational lifespan of rolling bearings and automated bearing diagnostics using the FAG SmartCheck vibration analysis equipment. Both of these services will connect to the cloud.
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