25 Jul 2024


Cloud-linked wireless nodes monitor rotating machines

The nodes in the Sulzer/Treon rotating machine monitoring system are linked to each other in a mesh network which is, in turn, connected to the cloud

Sulzer’s Finnish-based pump business has worked with Treon, a local specialist in wireless IoT hardware, to develop a wireless condition monitoring device for rotating machinery. The battery-operated Treon industrial node measures tri-axial vibrations and the surface temperatures of equipment such as pumps, motors and agitators. It is designed to operate as part of a wireless mesh network, making it easy and cost-effective to deploy on a large scale, or to retrofit to existing equipment.

Abnormal vibrations or high temperatures caused by component imbalances, misalignments, wear or improper use of equipment, are early indicators of machine failure. By gathering and analysing such data, the new wireless node allows service personnel to identify these irregularities without needing expensive wired installations, or having to move from one machine to another to gather data using handheld devices.

Because the data is routed automatically to the cloud via a gateway, it’s always available for review and further analysis.

“And because the wireless mesh network can be set up to accommodate anything from a few to thousands of sensors,” explains Treon CEO, Joni Korppi, “the Treon industrial node enables predictive maintenance in massive scale. With any cloud.”

Sami Saarenvalta, development manager at Sulzer Pumps in Finland, describes the condition-monitoring node – which Sulzer is marketing as the Sulzer Sense wireless IoT condition monitoring system – as “an important step in our digital journey”. It will allow his company’s customers to monitor any equipment – not just process-critical machinery – around the clock. “The measured data enables predictive maintenance and helps to avoid sudden equipment failure and eventual downtime,” he says.

The condition-monitoring system can identify changes in condition parameters and indicate potential faults at an early stage. Sulzer says this will help to avoid sudden pump failures and possible downtime. Users will be able to set alert values and will be notified automatically if this value is exceeded.

In addition to the Sulzer version, Treon plans to make the nodes available itself to systems integrators, service companies and other interested parties. It will also offer complete condition-monitoring systems including a cloud service and data storage.

“Sulzer’s long heritage and expertise in pumping solutions ensures that the product can stand up to the rigors of everyday use in industrial conditions,” says Korppi. “It’s a key enabler for Sulzer Sense condition monitoring system, and now it’s available for the rest of the industry.”