Schaeffler announces new advances that give remote monitoring systems the reliability needed for confident use in the harshest environments.
Schaeffler condition monitoring expert Jon Doe said, “We have CM contracts with clients in the industrial, wind turbine, offshore and marine sectors. What our customers need is reliability and that is what these advances provide. The marine sector has given Schaeffler engineers real challenges. They found that the support effort required to keep marine CM systems running actually outweighed the analytical requirement for fault diagnosis.”
Condition monitoring is regularly used in the marine industry and automated online condition monitoring is typical on large vessels. Remote online CM systems report back to shore-based CM specialists freeing the ship’s crew to concentrate on operating the vessel itself. The automated monitoring system alerts the ship’s engineer if a technical issue is registered. In addition automatic notifications are sent to the shore-based remote monitoring facility.
However incidents have been documented where major failures occurred with no alarm from the monitoring system. Such potentially catastrophic failings happen when the system is damaged, goes offline, or otherwise suffers a technical fault that goes unnoticed.
John Phillips stated, “Our administrative advances allow the CM system’s health to be monitored, starting from the transducer taking measurements through to the receipt of data at the monitoring centre. If a transducer or its cable is damaged the next data set sent from the ship can contain an error message indicating this fault. The monitoring computer sends a daily message to the local monitoring boxes in the engine room to check that communications are intact. This is then relayed back to the shore-based monitoring centre as a daily ‘still alive’ message.”
Schaeffler, October 24, 2012