Power generation oil analysis with OilAlert

Effective oil analysis in power generation is essential. Some generators can operate 7 days a week. Whether a generator is powered by diesel, waste gas, natural gas or even the wind, uptime is critical. Their profitability depends on reducing service costs and downtime. Avoiding service and analysis disruptions is important. Avoiding equipment failure is vital. There is no room for excessive costs in power generation. OilAlert can help to reduce these excessive costs.

OilAlert sensors reduce the maintenance burden by providing oil condition monitoring for wind turbines

OilAlert sensors reduce the maintenance burden by providing oil condition monitoring for wind turbines

Why is power generation oil analysis so important?

Power generation has to be reliable to be profitable. Renewable energy is already criticised over its cost; it can’t afford to let maintenance costs push its prices yet higher. Inadequate maintenance programs will leave businesses at a disadvantage.

OilAlert helps suppliers by giving them realtime reports on the condition of the oils in their generators and turbines. It means expensive service visits and oil changes can be scheduled according only to need. Pointless service calls to replace perfectly effective oil become a thing of the past.

OilAlert can detect tiny traces of wear metals from gearboxes and pumps as well as numerous chemical contaminants. It acts as an early warning system for your maintenance team. As soon as an issue is detected your OilAlert-equipped generator can send an alert to a control centre anywhere in the world. Issues can be dealt with before they become disruptive problems.

OilAlert Live transmits realtime oil condition data back to a service depot anywhere in the world

OilAlert Live transmits realtime oil condition data back to a service depot anywhere in the world

Power generation oil analysis: Wind turbines

During 2016, 11.5% of the UK’s electricity was generated through wind farms. This makes proactive maintenance extremely important. Not only that, but these critical and complex turbines tend to be located in remote and inaccessible locations. Every service visit is costly. By providing a real-time report on the quality of the lubricating oil, OilAlert Live can tell the service company whether a maintenance visit is actually needed. It gives a voice to the oil.

By combining the basic capabilities of the OilAlert sensor with the communications capabilities of OilAlert Live, these reports can be broadcast instantly to a central service centre. No site visits are required.

OilAlert Pro goes even further by incorporating IPU’s OilIfe bypass oil filter system (formerly known as EOLS), an advanced filtration system that increases oil life by a factor of four.

The savings for land-based wind turbines are huge. The savings for offshore turbines are spectacular.

Power generation oil analysis: Landfill gensets

The economic advantages of powering gensets with landfill gas can be wiped out if the genset is damaged by the inevitably contaminated atmosphere associated with waste disposal sites.

Power generation oil analysis with OilAlert will help to reduce generating costs by preventing downtime:

  1. The digital readout of critical conditions from the OilAlert Plus package gives operators a real-time visual indication of the condition of the genset’s lubricating oil. Preventative action can be taken if the oil degrades or the engine develops a problem.
  2. A central control centre can see exactly the same information – and can compare it against historical trends – using OilAlert Live. Condition reports are broadcast to the centre in real-time using a cellular (GPRS) link.
  3. Oil life can be doubled using IPU’s OilLife bypass oil filter system, an advanced filtration and evaporation system that removes harmful contaminants, water and acid from the oil.
power generation oil analysis

Power generation oil analysis is essential in reducing generating costs at landfill sites by minimising maintenance and operating overheads

Power generation oil analysis: Standby gensets

If a building has to call on a standby genset it is already facing a crisis. If the genset fails that crisis becomes a disaster. OilAlert’s ability to diagnose engine problems is a godsend.

Lubricating oil is the litmus paper for an engine’s health. Most engine problems will have a detectable effect on the lubricating oil.

As gensets are cycled through their regular maintenance checks OilAlert sensors can give an instant assessment of the condition of the engine and its oil. Unlike more rudimentary systems, OilAlert gives accurate readings as soon as the engine starts; it doesn’t need a long warm-up period. OilAlert will find numerous hidden conditions that could harm the reliability of your genset.

OilAlert highlights

OilAlert reports on oil condition in real-time, alerting the operator or a service centre of impending problems.

  • By precisely analysing the oil’s condition, OilAlert sensors can help identify a number of engine problems such as overheating, dirt ingress, fuel dilution, component failure, excessive component wear and operator abuse.
  • OilAlert sensors can be fitted to any oil-lubricated mechanical part. Monitoring gearboxes provides an extra level of protection against disruptive failures.
  • Oil, filter and maintenance costs can be reduced because OilAlert accurately predicts how oil degrades over time. Oil change services can be scheduled when they’re actually needed instead of according to a theoretical timescale.
  • OilAlert takes away the need for off-site lab testing. Contamination can build up quickly, and may cause breakdown whilst waiting for lab results. Having an instant report on the condition of your oil means the engine can be shut down as soon as an issue appears.
  • Unscheduled downtime is avoided because OilAlert reports on the condition of an engine and gearbox. Oil is the litmus test for an engine’s health.
  • OilAlert is an economical way to prevent system failures.

The OilAlert range

The OilAlert range is structured to suit a variety of engines, equipment and budgets. The basic system can be used to protect relatively inexpensive equipment; the more sophisticated system is better suited to business-critical equipment.

    1. OilAlert Lite is the core of the OilAlert range. It is a permittivity sensor that accurately and constantly monitors the condition of any lubricant. The sensor is mounted directly or remotely onto the engine. It can be combined with other components in the OilAlert range or linked to third-party engine management systems.
    2. OilAlert Plus adds a digital readout of critical conditions to the OilAlert sensor. The display is mounted in a vehicle’s cab to alert the operator as soon as a problem arises.
    3. OilAlert Live adds remote communications to the OilAlert sensor. Wherever the host vehicle is working, the state of its lubricants is broadcast to a service centre that can react to any problems.
    4. OilAlert Pro provides the ultimate level of protection. This combines the OilAlert sensor, display and remote communications with IPU’s innovative OilLife bypass oil filter to extend oil life and service intervals. This offers the ultimate way to extend the service intervals of your equipment: OilLife can reduce service frequencies by a factor of 4 while the OilAlert system supports it by checking for problems.

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