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Successful Proof-of-Concept with OKTO Acoustics and the journey continues

With the installation of acoustic sensors on the cooling pumps at the Nemo Link converter stations in Zeebrugge (Belgium) and Richborough (UK) in October last year, OKTO Acoustics, the winner of the Open Innovation Challenge of 2019, started to test their AI-based sensoring system on Nemo Link assets. The results of this Proof-of-Concept convinced transformer experts during the company-wide Innovation Week last December resulting in a new project starting this year.

The solution successfully proved its potential and provides a health indication by “listening” to the acoustic information emitted from the bearings of the cooling pumps. The non-intrusive method captures the acoustic information from bearings and analyses their condition close to real time. This condition state information (on/off status as well as health indication) is accessible through an online user interface.

To get there, the experts from OKTO Acoustics trained their algorithm with acoustic samples recorded from their sensors and combined it with information from Nemo Link experts. With the help of the analysis, the unique acoustic spectrum and the emitted acoustic energy of each pump gets visible. The sensors have integrated microprocessors that are now able to process and label the acoustic pattern while filtering irrelevant background noises. The results show substantial differences between the pump’s acoustic signatures and the experts identified the critical frequency bands in which wear and tear becomes noticeable. 

OKTO Acoustics caught the attention of transformer experts during the innovation week in December last year. We are happy to announce that a new use case evolved out of this event with a kick-off already this year. The goal of this project is to better understand the signs of wear and tear of tap changers. Thanks to the Open Innovation Challenge, new technologies are tested, validated and step by step find their into business applications. 

Featured Project

Acoustic sensors to monitor critical assets (OIC 2019)