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Program vault helps to restore stricken drives

01 June, 2003

Program vault helps to restore stricken drives

UK drives users are being offered a new service designed to minimise downtime following plant failures or accidents. When the drive is first installed or reconfigured, all of the critical software parameters will be backed up and stored on a central database. If there is a subsequent plant failure, the parameters can be restored rapidly from the archive.

If, for example, a drive is damaged in an accident or fire, the parameters can be loaded into a new drive that can be working on site within hours. Using the saved parameters, the new drive will work exactly like its predecessor without needing any trial runs.

The service, called Drive Care, is being offered by ABB and its partners in the ABB Drives Alliance. Users of the service will be given a laminated copy of the drive program, and a sticker attached to their drive will tell them what to do in an emergency.

"DriveCare really gives users peace-of-mind for the future operation of their plant," says James Haigh, general manager of ABB`s drive products operation in the UK. "When downtime strikes, the maintenance engineers frequently spend hours poring over their records to recover the correct parameters to get the drive up and running again. Now, we will be keeping all that information on a database, ready to re-use when the customer calls, any time of the day or night."

A planned maintenance programme called DriveCare+ is also on offer. This includes periodic visits to the drives to ensure that their connections are tight, that their ventilation is working, and that they are free of dust and moisture. The drive parameters will be checked against the original set-up to ensure that they have not been altered, and any spare drives will be powered up to test that their capacitors are in a good condition.

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