Four Maintenance Advantages of Using Electric Motors for Assembly Applications
1. Cycle Count
Electric pumps measure a range of parameters that pneumatic pumps cannot measure, including torque, amperage, voltage, resistance, and cycle count. Cycle count measurements and data tracking provide the ability to implement predictive maintenance practices rather than reactive maintenance. Cycle count data can be used to set maintenance schedules for items such as changing the motor oil or when to service or replace the pump lower. Additionally, electric pumps can easily be linked to the gateway map of an industrial PLC. This connection allows you to set notifications to a set number of cycles.
2. Drum Level and Change-out
A sensor in the electric motor can easily detect the position and level of the drum. This avoids the drum running empty unexpectedly and causing unplanned downtime. While this could be done with a pneumatically driven motor, the data isn’t automatically integrated into the overall system as it is with an electric motor.
3. Even Wear on Pump Lowers
An electric pump improves overall system design, reduces fluid pressure, and leads to pump lowers wearing evenly, which reduces maintenance cost. This is because an electric motor can essentially be told when and how to cycle. On the other hand, a pneumatic motor only cycles when there is a reduction in the force.
This difference is particularly relevant in a booster application, for example, in an automotive plant, where a series of pumps provides additional pressure to the overall system. If pneumatic motors operate the pumps, the pump with the least pressure drop will work, while the others will stay closed. This means that the bulk of the work will be done by just one pump, which will wear out quicker than the others. If all pumps in the series are operated with electric motors, all will work in concert, and wear will be distributed evenly.
4. Improved Efficiency and Reduced Wear on Auxiliary Devices
A pneumatic system is often run at the highest possible pressure to avoid a lack of fluid pressure, which puts unnecessary strain on auxiliary devices. An electric motor can specify a certain pressure or flow – and never exceed it. This enables the ability to control the fluid pressure within a tight window. Not only is this more efficient, but will reduce wear on all downstream auxiliary devices such as meters, valves, and regulators.
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