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ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor - Motors that let you know when it’s time for a service

ABB’s new condition monitoring solution for low voltage motors

A new era of remote condition monitoring for low voltage motors has arrived. ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor picks up data on vibration, temperature and other parameters and uses it to reduce motor downtime by up to 70 percent, extend lifetime by as much as 30 percent and lower energy use by up to 10 percent.

ABB has developed a compact ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor that is attached to the frame of low voltage induction motors. No wiring is needed. Using on-board algorithms, based on ABB’s decades of motor expertise, the ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor relays information about the motor’s health, via a smartphone and over the internet, to a secure server. This solution can make huge numbers of motors into smart devices, enabling them to benefit from intelligent services. 

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What is special about ABB’s new condition monitoring solution for low voltage (LV) motors?

LV motors play a vital role in industry, driving a wide range of processes, but they still work in much the same way as when they were first introduced. ABB’s new condition monitoring solution changes that by making motors intelligent. By enabling motors to provide information, to “talk”, it represents a real milestone in their 120-year history. The data the motors produce is analyzed by advanced algorithms that incorporate ABB’s extensive know-how and experience, to help motor users plan maintenance, cut costs, and optimize their plant operations and energy efficiency.

What are the main benefits?

The main benefits are:

– increased motor uptime
– longer motor lifetime
– improved motor performance and productivity

At present most LV motors are simply run until they fail. This can cause a number of problems, such as downtime, secondary damage to other equipment, lost production and poor quality.

The ABB solution enables permanently installed condition monitoring to be applied to almost all LV motors, so plants can bring their entire LV motor fleet into the scope of predictive maintenance. Proper maintenance planning will result in higher reliability and a longer lifetime. It will also be possible to analyze energy consumption patterns to create more efficient loading profiles and so reduce the plant’s energy consumption.


How does the condition monitoring solution work?

ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor is attached to each motor. This picks up signals relating to the motor’s status parameters. Data from the ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor are transferred wirelessly – via a smartphone or a gateway solution, and over the internet – to a secure ABB server. The data are processed by algorithms, developed by ABB, to produce meaningful information. The information is then made available to the motor user, either on a smartphone screen or through a dedicated customer portal.

The intuitive user interface includes a simple “traffic light” system that provides an overview of the monitored motors.

If the solution detects a problem it sends an alert to the user, who can then use the portal to access trend data and get further information on the motor’s operation profile.



When and where will the solution be launched?

The solution is currently being validated with selected beta customers.

Please note that all the required validation test sites have already been chosen, and ABB cannot accept further requests for testing.

It is expected that the solution will be made available as an upgrade kit for existing motors during the latter part of Q1, 2017 in all markets.

At the same time, selected new ABB and Baldor motors will be made available with the solution factory-fitted, either as an option or as standard.

Once the solution is generally available, ABB plans to gradually:
- increase the breadth and depth of functionality by providing regular software updates (firmware, app, web portal),
- extend the types of new motors that can be ordered with the solution factory-fitted.


Do you have more questions?

Then please follow this link where are listed other frequently asked questions and answers.
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