Drives and Controls Magazine
Smart sensor checks the condition of pillow block bearings
Published:  08 May, 2019

ABB has adapted its smart sensor technology, previously used to monitor the condition of electric motors, to help users of pillow block bearings to minimise downtime.

The Dodge brand smart sensor, which is part of ABB’s Ability powertrain condition-monitoring portfolio, provides early warnings of possible bearing problems by analysing vibration and temperature data. ABB says that 80% of bearing failures are due to lubrication problems, and the sensor will detect overheated bearings that may indicate inadequate lubrication. Unusual vibrations may indicate system problems.

The easily-attached sensor communicates wirelessly with a smartphone or a Bluetooth gateway. This simplifies access to data from bearings in awkward or dangerous locations.

ABB’s smart sensor monitors vibration and temperatures in pillow block bearings

“Bearings are critical components in conveyors and are often the first indicator of a plant problem,” says Jonas Spoorendonk, ABB’s digital portfolio manager for motors and generators in Germany. “Displaying the condition of the bearing allows personnel to identify a potential problem quickly and reliably so that maintenance can be scheduled and an unforeseen shutdowns can be avoided."