Large electric motors form the core of many industries. As machines are designed to tighter tolerances, there is a growing need, for the sake of reliability, to monitor their behaviour and performance. Electrical signature analysis is proving valuable on wide range of motors to detect both mechanical and electrical faults.
Vibration analysis (VA) as means of detecting failure of mechanical parts of electrical machines is a well-established technique. VA can be extended to detect certain electrical faults as well, but for accurate electrical condition detection, electrical testing is required. Accelerometers applied to mechanical components of the drive train are traditionally used for condition monitoring but require their own data acquisition system and analysis software.
In contrast, the electrical current and voltage are continuously available and can be used for condition monitoring. Electric signature analysis makes use of the abnormal variations in input current to detect faults and failures.
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