Schneider Electric is offering a new solution that extends a transformer’s lifetime. By incorporating digital transformation through the implementation of IoT sensors and expert analysis, Schneider Electric can now monitor transformer insulation health. The EcoStruxture Transformer Expert, designed for affordable and accurate transformer monitoring, has the ability to offer automated insights that identify assets of concern and recommend action.
Periodic oil sample data is collected using new sensors, which allow data analysis and correlation with insights to predict irreversible patterns. Potential risks can thus be assessed, and data-driven life extension, risk reduction, and maintenance programmes can be developed.
The most common cause of failure for transformers is insulation failure; it deteriorates due to partial discharge, water content in oil and paper, and temperature.
The EcoStruxure Transformer Expert difference
EcoStruxture Transformer Expert (ETE) allows users to assess, track and forecast ‘insulation state’ and ‘life left’ through automated online analysis. The solution offers a fleet-wide dashboard and configurable alerts. By using low-cost and multi-sensor probes and automated algorithms and alerts, this solution can provide an accurate state assessment through modelling and prediction.
The optimisation of transformation life
The ETE platform uses an innovative sensor to monitor key parameters in order to optimise transformer life. These include:
- Engineering data: this is inclusive of temperature, water activity, PD and vibration, as well as fleet-wide and individual trends to aid in forecasting.
- Operating state: this focuses on measuring temperature and water activity. This also involves a breakdown voltage of oil, and offers sage limits and trend alerts.
- Insulation ageing: the new system can calculate effective age, ageing rate and life left to prevent risk and offer maintenance strategies.
- Maintenance management: this includes features such as identifying leaks, incorporating cooling optimisation and dry-out impacts/modelling to aid with decision making.
- Asset management: In addition to measuring maintenance issues, the solution implements fleet-wide replacement ranking and a scenario analysis, which forecasts the impact of load changes on temperature and ‘life left’.
The science behind the EcoStruxure Transformer Expert
In three simple steps the sensor is ready to start monitoring the transformer using built-in mobile communications – meaning no network configuration. This data is then analysed and insights are provided, enabling the prediction of irreversible tendencies. Ultimately, extending the life of your transformer.
“Automated data collection, analysis and recommendations are essential components to optimising the life of your transformer”, says Lee Slaymaker, Power Services Commercial Lead at Schneider Electric. “The three main root causes of insulation decay can quickly and easily be monitored, with no special training required, allowing you to make an informed decision that will avoid irreversible trends”.