WESTWARD ELECTRIC CO. Pty. Ltd.

Condition Monitoring Specialists PO BOX 4547 KEMPTON PARK 1620 Tel: +27 11 453 0007 Fax: +27 11 453 7190 E-Mail: techsupport@westward.co.za

In conjunction with Altaire Industrial Consumables, India.

REPORT ON SHAFT VOLTAGE MEASUREMENTS CONDUCTED ON THE GHH PAC-C113 AIR COMPRESSOR AT RELIANCE PATALGANGA, INDIA.
TEST DATE: TESTED BY: MAY 2005 LOURENS VAN SCHALKWYK

Two recordings were done before the Sohre brushes were installed. During the shut down Sohre shaft grounding brushes were installed on the compressor at the following locations. BACKGROUND Carbon brushes were mounted between the LP compressor and the expander and also between the gearbox and the HP compressor. HP compressor speed:14000 RPM 6A 8. Traces were also taken with the brushes disconnected from ground to determine the shaft voltage at the different brush locations. INTRODUCTION. See train configuration for brush locations. During the shaft voltage test only one specific brush was disconnected from ground to measure the shaft voltage while the other three brushes were connected to ground. 2.5A 8.5A 6A HP EXP HP COMP GEAR BOX TURBINE LP COMP LP EXP 4. SHAFT VOLTAGE TRACES Shaft voltage measurements were taken with a fluke scope meter. Turbine speed:7200 RPM. . Shaft voltage measurements were taken with an oscilloscope and portable bristle brush next to the respective carbon brushes on the shaft while the compressor was in operation. The air compressor at RELIANCE PATALGANGA consists of a turbine driving a LP compressor on the one side and a HP compressor on the other side of the turbine. After the Sohre brushes were installed voltage traces were taken across the 5 amp shunts at the different brush locations.5A bristle brush was installed between the turbine and the LP compressor. One type 6A bristle brush was installed between the gearbox and the HP compressor. These traces were taken using a portable gold plated brush adjacent to the respective carbon brush locations. One type 8. There is a gearbox between the turbine and the HP compressor.1. One type 6A bristle brush was installed between the LP compressor and the expander. 3. The scaling of the shunt is 5 ampere = 100 millivolt.5A bristle brush was installed between the turbine and the gearbox. with the brushes connected to ground to determine the shaft current. TRAIN CONFIGURATION. There is an expander at the end of the LP compressor and an expander at the end of the HP compressor. One type 8.

. This proves that the carbon brush was ineffective in reducing the potential between the shaft and the bearings on that specific shaft to below 50 mV. FIGURE 2 The voltage traces in Figure 1 and Figure 2 shows evidence of a combination of static voltage as well as cyclic voltages generated from residual magnetism. The high voltage would have resulted in bearing damage due to shaft currents.Figure 1 This shaft voltage of 12 volt peak to peak was measured between the LP compressor and the expander with the carbon brush on the shaft. The high voltage would have resulted in bearing damage due to shaft currents. This proves that the carbon brush was ineffective in reducing the potential between the shaft and the bearings on that specific shaft to below 50 mV. Despite Sohre brushes being installed this train must be demagnetised at the next available opportunity. FIGURE 1 Figure 2 This shaft voltage of 6 volt peak to peak was measured between the HP compressor and the gearbox with the carbon brush on the shaft.

The shaft voltage spikes have a value of about 1 volt peak to peak. The shaft voltage is reduced to below 50 mV with a current flow of approximately 0.2 amps. FIGURE 4 . FIGURE 3 Figure 4 shows the shaft voltage when the brush between the LP compressor and the LP expander is disconnected from ground. The repetitive waveform shows evidence of residual magnetism which will cause high shaft currents if the magnetic fields align during a rub or machine upset.Figure 3 is a representation of the voltage measured across the 5 amp shunt from the brush between the LP compressor and the LP expander with the shaft grounded.

2 amps. FIGURE 5 Figure 6 shows the shaft voltage when the brush between the turbine and the LP compressor is disconnected from ground. FIGURE 6 . The shaft voltage is reduced to below 50 mV with a current flow of approximately 0.Figure 5 is a representation of the voltage measured across the 5 amp shunt from the brush between the turbine and the LP compressor with the shaft grounded. The shaft voltage spikes have a value of about 300 millivolt peak to peak and are caused by static voltages created by wet steam from the turbine.

FIGURE 7 Figure 8 shows the shaft voltage when the brush between the turbine and the gearbox is disconnected from ground. The shaft voltage is reduced to below 50 mV with a current flow of approximately 0. The shaft voltage spikes have a value of about 50 millivolt peak to peak and are a combination of static voltage and voltage generated from residual magnetism. FIGURE 8 .3 amps.Figure 7 is a representation of the voltage measured across the 5 amp shunt from the brush between the turbine and the gearbox with the shaft grounded.

The shaft voltage spikes have a value of about 50 millivolt peak to peak and is due to voltages generated from residual magnetism. The shaft voltage is reduced to below 50 mV with a current flow of approximately 0.2 amps. FIGURE 10 . FIGURE 9 Figure 10 shows the shaft voltage when the brush between the gearbox and HP compressor is disconnected from ground.Figure 9 is a representation of the voltage measured across the 5 amp shunt from the brush between the gearbox and the HP compressor with the shaft grounded.

A continuous current monitor should be installed to alarm in the event of high shaft current. The shaft currents must be measured daily to detect this sudden change. It is important to note that if the magnetic fields align due to machine rubs. This report further proves that carbon brushes are ineffective for shaft grounding of high speed turbo-machinery. lightning or close welding the shaft current will increase and will lead to brush burn out and eventual bearing damage. machine surges. The shaft voltage was drastically reduced when the gold plated Sohre brushes were installed. CONCLUSION a. b. Although the shaft voltages were low as expected there is evidence of residual magnetism with the machine during the open circuit tests. There is also a high risk of gear damage if the current flows from one shaft to the next across the gearbox.5. d. . c.

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