The system, which is compatible not only on Brush generators but on virtually any unit with power output greater than around 10MW, allows detailed internal inspections to be carried out without the time-consuming process of removing the rotor to gain access.
At the heart of the system is a remotely-operated vehicle equipped with 4 high-resolution cameras, an Electromagnetic Core Imperfection Detection (EL CID) sensor and a physical ‘tap’ test capability, allowing it to carry out comprehensive visual EL CID and stator wedge tightness tests.
BRUSH has now equipped four maintenance teams around its global network with robotic inspection capabilities. A further roll out to provide a system in six major international territories is planned for the next 12 months in order to provide greater availability and reaction time.
The system is easy to transport, so robotic inspections can be carried out in remote and offshore locations where rotor removal can be an additional logistical challenge.
Malcolm Dunkley, lead mechanical engineer at Brush said: “The potential time saving we can offer our customers as a result of the investment is significant. On an average traditional maintenance project, it takes around five days to remove the rotor and prepare for the inspection and the same again to re-install it afterwards, where the robot can be set up in a matter of hours.
“The duration of the testing itself is similar with both approaches, so customers will often be avoiding more than five days of generator down-time – especially where the location of the generator makes it complicated to withdraw the rotor.
“The video and audio feeds generated by the vehicle are reviewed live by inspection experts, so the quality of the test is equal to the traditional approach, with the added benefit that a record of the footage and data from the tests is stored and made available for later review if necessary.”
BRUSH Aftermarket provides complete 24-7 lifecycle management support to customers in Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, the Far East and Australia. In 2015 BRUSH announced a multi-million dollar investment into its dedicated aftermarket facility in Pittsburgh, USA. In 2016 it plans to open similar maintenance workshops in Latin America, the Middle East and South East Asia, to further enhance its offering.