Transformer Monitoring gets sophisticated as grids get smarter

ABB recognized for its unique IT/OT convergence leadership

The enormous costs of Power transformer failure is an incentive for electric companies to ensure reliability and availability throughout the life of cycle of these key grid assets. But how? The expertise may not be readily available and period assessment schedules can be resource intensive. Intelligence holds the key.

On-line monitoring and diagnostics help to improve performance, reduce failure risks and cut maintenance costs. A monitoring system must be safe, reliable, easy to use and cost effective. ABB’s TEC monitoring system meets all these requirements and adds  intelligence. With the help of sensors, TEC performs a complete evaluation of the operating conditions, both current and historical. It can also simulate different service conditions and forecast their impact on the life of the transformer.

Smart grid needs are pushing the deployment of next generation sensors and system integration tools as grid operations and monitoring needs become more complex and the need for  information on a real time basis increases. For instance it is important to understand the effects of key parameters like temperature on the life cycle of the transformer. This is just one of the many indicators that tells us about its health.

In the past, information and operational technologies (IT and OT) have developed along separate paths, but as grids get smarter there is a clear realization that much benefit can be derived from IT/OT integration. IT applications can now work alongside and even enhance OT applications to monitor asset health, for instance of transformers out in the field, help us take preventive actions and maintain them better thereby increasing up time and improving  system performance over the life cycle. With the acquisition of Ventyx, ABB has established a leadership position when it comes to IT/OT integration. This is a clear advantage that ABB has in a highly competitive industry sector – a fact that’s not been lost on the world as indicated in this recent article in Greentech Media.





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About the author

Scott Curley

I lead the Demand Side Operations for ABB's power transformer business in North America, including strategic partnerships, marketing, engineering, project management and transportation of Power transformers. I've worked at ABB for over 20 years and have lived in the USA, UK and Australia.
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