ABB Achieves Scalable Connectivity With New Industrial-Scale Wireless Condition Monitoring Solution

July 07, 2020 by Ben Stepanian

ABB releases a solution for the lifespan of machines and future industrial machine design.

With the partnership with Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company, the combination of Aruba's network monitoring system and ABB’s new products, machine and system design just became more intuitive. Diagnostics like temperature and vibrations can be monitored for bearings, pumps, and motors through a wireless connection. ABB’s solution can be integrated into existing components to increase the lifespan of the equipment.


ABB’s novel adaptable smart sensor. Image courtesy of ABB.


Facilities and processes will benefit from this new technology to reduce downtimes and keep operations running smoothly by collecting information from the conditions of the running equipment. Each separate component can be monitored on a single network that displays the state of operation. Equipment can be monitored from anywhere using Aruba's next-level wifi infrastructure and can be diagnosed with issues through automated notifications.  


Novel MEMs Device

In today's microelectromechanical industry, sensor devices are manufactured and packaged to yield better and consistent functionality. With ABB’s smart sensor, a robust device means a simple design. This device reads the temperature up to a ±2℃ accuracy and vibrations up to a 1Hz-1.6kHz range in whichever component it is screwed into, and will store a timeline data chart into whichever cloud-based system it's running on, in this case, an HPE Aruba network.

With the use of this device, inefficiencies can be quickly identified within a system making it safer and more cost-effective. The days of waiting or guessing when a part would fail are over, that is unless you didn't mechanically calculate your system. When time is an underlying factor when setting up a system, using monitored components and viewing them over a phone app will give the engineer or project manager peace of mind knowing that they can predict when something is working properly.


Uninterrupted Data Management

Aruba’s wifi infrastructure is meant to keep up with live machinery and manage the data it obtains from it. Real-time insights are recorded and stored so that an operator can see the past results of an operation time months afterward.


ABB's single operator overwatch of system. Image courtesy of ABB.


Aruba's network is meant to handle terabytes of data to provide feedback from components. Components are managed intuitively by a 3 part system. Green meaning fully operational, yellow meaning inefficiency, and red for component failure. This color-coded system is an at-a-glance type system but allows the operator to view better details of the component such as frequency. With this data management system, maintenance and remediation can be done faster and efficiently without there being any guess to whether a part needs replacement.


ABB's Smart Sensor for Industry Use

ABB has already displayed some typical components that can be monitored using their technology. Components like bearings, pumps, and motors used for industrial systems are monitored using ABB’s Smart sensor enabling for further development of this technology by collecting data.

This technology is already being utilized by a renewable energy company in Switzerland called Axpo. Axpo currently utilizes this technology for its hydroelectric plant and seeks to expand into the commercial installation.

“When we first heard about this joint ABB-Aruba solution we knew that it would be a perfect fit for the 360-degrees approach of our digital power plant,” said Emil Bieri, Axpo’s Head of Digital Transformation Hydro. “ABB’s new offering is easy-to-deploy and provides us with the required insights and scalability for our large fleet of hydropower plants.”

HPE and ABB have been working together on a global scale since the end of 2017, with hopes that this new collaboration will continue to improve industrial machine design.