Remote Monitoring of Transformer – Everything You Need to Know
- May 20, 2021
- Posted by: Sanket Pathak
- Categories: Cloud Engineering, Device Engineering, Internet of Things
With the rise of internet-connected smart devices, many systems around us have entirely transformed. Look around; you can monitor your home on your phone via a smart camera. You can switch on your AC at home before leaving the office. Moreover, you can also keep your health intact with the smartwatch on your hand.
In short, technologies like IoT, AI, etc., have streamlined the ways we used to interact with things around us. Just like this, the devices and machines of the industrial sector have also evolved. Today, you can monitor and manage a power grid from a remote location, and a transformer is the pillar element of it.
What is the need for a Remote Transformer Monitoring System?
Transformers are an indispensable part of a power grid that can go offline anytime but not always. Hence, it becomes critical to keep an eye on its performance parameters. Thanks to IoT, you can save a lot of time while monitoring everything remotely. To know-how, keep reading!
- Elevates Uptime
One of the key needs to monitor a transformer remotely is to increase the uptime. With timely analysis of the performance parameters like oil level, current, voltage, lug temperature, winding temperature, oil temperature etc. One can easily know about the potential problems in advance and can take appropriate preventative measures.
- Monitoring Condition from OEM’s perspective
Whenever OEM is through with installation & commissioning of Transformer, he/she can hardly monitor the health condition of the supplied equipment. Most of the time since the Transformer is installed at remote places typically in forests, deserts, etc. routine maintenance of the equipment becomes a big challenge. With remote monitoring of the Transformer on a real-time basis, it helps the service support team of OEM to continuously monitor the health condition of the Transformer. Based on the trends, preventive maintenance can be carried out avoiding huge losses.
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- Enhances Network Optimization
With the right IoT transformer monitoring system, you will easily see the low voltage networks. Based on this, you can easily make changes to the power network for optimized output and overall system.
The optimization of the power distribution system will also be helpful in reducing energy losses. Thus, making the transformer last for a longer time.
- Assists in Demand Planning
Once you will have the performance of the transformer stored on the IoT cloud. You can use that and run it through a big data analytics tool to discover hidden patterns and correlations. The obtained outputs will help you sight the demands of the customer in the future. Thus, you can plan ahead.
Key Elements of the Remote Transformer Monitoring System
The Remote Transformer Monitoring System may sound simple to you, but there are many elements that are indispensable. Here are all of the critical elements!
- Sensors: Oil level sensor, Oil temperature sensor, Lug temperature sensor, Humidity sensor, Energy meter.
- GSM Communication System: A system for remote data communication that supports 2G, 3G, and 4G networks
- Antennas: Internal GPS antenna and external GSM antenna for wireless data transmission and reception.
- Memory: Internal Memory of around 265 MB or more to store data in case of power failure.
- Battery backup: Li-ion battery backup for the power failure scenario
- RTC: Real-time clock for data storage with time logs.
- Built-in GNSS: Global Navigation Satellite System for cloud connectivity.
- Analog and Digital pins: For collecting valuable data from analog and digital sensors.
- Modbus-RTU: Data communication protocol for integration with the energy meter.
- Charging circuit: For charging the internal Li-ion battery through the main supply.
- Voltage protection circuit: To protect the device from over-voltage protection.
- IoT platform and Dashboard: For device connectivity, device management, data storage, data analytics tools, reporting tools, and firmware over the air (FOA).
- Mobile Application: For handy monitoring of every aspect easily, anywhere.
Alerts and Insights Provided by a Remote Transformer Monitoring System
The Remote Transformer Monitoring System is capable of providing you with:
- Vital electrical parameters: Active power, apparent power, current, harmonics, voltage, etc.
- Availability status: If the transformer is OFF or ON.
- Network Status: If the connected monitoring system is online or not.
- Thermal parameters: Oil temperature, Lug, oil level, humidity, ambient temperature, etc.
- Load insights: If the transformer is overloaded or balanced.
- Power status: It tells you if the transformer is running at optimized power or is consuming more or less than the set threshold value.
- Demand trends: Display live as well as historical data with demand trends. This helps in understanding if you need to increase the power supply or not.
In short, it is easy to conclude that a remote monitoring system for a transformer will help in saving costs and planning for future electrical demands. Moreover, it also reduces the manpower required as you can analyze everything while sitting in the comfort of your office or home.
Unlike traditional systems, you don’t have to repeatedly visit the transformer’s location to monitor everything. All these aspects make remote transformer monitoring systems a must-have for future industrial needs.