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Helps avoid unplanned downtime

13 May 2021

A LIFE cycle assessment service provides a dynamic report of the age and operating performance of every ABB drive and motor across a plant, helping to save time and money and improve profitability by preventing lost production.

The ABB Ability Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) service provides a comprehensive overview for variable speed drive (VSD) and motor users of the health and maintenance requirements of their installed base. The service was developed in response to feedback from ABB engineers, who in the past year have found increasing numbers of avoidable VSD and motor failures on customer site visits.

The LCA catalogues each VSD and motor in the facility. The data is then stored in a dynamic report which can be accessed by the customer at any time to see the age, location, criticality, operating environment, service history and part replacement history of all assets. This can help to formulate maintenance schedules, while flagging up any VSDs or motors that need immediate attention, allowing operators to project maintenance budgets and manage costs more effectively. Critical and at-risk assets are identified, providing a comprehensive overview of the entire VSD and motor fleet.

The tool can also be used to provide a pathway towards the end-of-life of older VSDs and motors, allowing operators to manage obsolescence and plan accordingly. This helps to avoid downtime caused by unexpected failures. The service is available in two tiers:

·         LCA Light – For generic fleet analysis. All relevant information about the fleet of VSDs is combined, including detailed service history, site details and typical use. This is complemented by the ABB drives technical and service databases, as well as the user’s own insight, and is then analysed by algorithms to create recommended life cycle plans. This level of analysis may be carried out based on recorded information, thus negating the need for any site visits.

·         LCA Full – For comprehensive analysis of each individual asset. ABB experts will make an on-site visit to perform VSD criticality studies, make observations about the site environment, process and usage conditions, technical validation, and other variables. All analysis is carried out to standardised processes to ensure high quality and consistency of input data.

Both the LCA Light and Full versions are available to existing ABB customers, with those running large sites, including food & beverage, water and process industries, standing to benefit the most. "Customers genuinely have nothing to lose by carrying out an LCA and, in fact, benefit from a structured six-year plan," says ABB's Andy Pearson. "We have never carried out an LCA whereby the customer hasn’t immediately seen the benefit and then planned upgrades to avoid inevitable downtime. The output of an LCA report is very black and white and is clear to anyone at any level as to which VSDs or motors are obsolete and the level of risk to production."