Coperion now offers the option to equip gearboxes on its ZSK twin screw extruders in sizes from ZSK 43 to ZSK 133 with a condition monitoring system. The goal of this system is significantly improved planning capability for maintenance tasks. The extremely reliable and yet affordable system identifies irregularities in extruder gearbox operation early enough to avoid potential damage. Necessary service calls can be scheduled in advance, keeping the extruder's downtime to a minimum. Using the remote service option for ZSK extruders, Coperion experts can provide support on short notice as needed and give direction to personnel on site.
Coperion has had such a condition monitoring system in use for large ZSK extruders for many years with great success. Gearbox condition monitoring and data analysis are now available for small to mid-sized ZSK extruders as well – yet another measure Coperion has taken to help customers fully exploit their ZSK extruder’s high performance potential and maximize its overall efficiency.
Vibration and Oil Condition Monitoring Ensure Long-Term Trouble-Free Operation
Condition monitoring of ZSK extruders focuses on two important extruder gearbox parameters: gearbox vibrations and oil condition.
To monitor vibrations, accelerometers are mounted on the extruder gearbox at several points, each one measuring individually arising vibrations for each gearbox bearing. When the vibrations approach a critical threshold, a warning signal is sounded.
Using the EpcNT extruder control for ZSK models, the machine operator can visualize the operating condition of every gearbox bearing and gauge the overall gearbox condition at a glance. Moreover, important condition parameters, such as the vibration amplitude in the corresponding frequency band, can be added to the display separately for each bearing. Over the long term, damage to the ZSK extruder gearbox and corresponding downtimes are avoided.
The gearbox’s oil condition is determined using flow sensors that constantly measure the oil quality in the lubrication system. Extended oil use can cause the quality of the oil to fluctuate. As the gearbox oil approaches a critical threshold, the condition monitoring system sounds an alarm for this as well. Necessary oil changes or maintenance tasks are identified early and can be carried out as part of long-term planning.
Using remote service, experts from Coperion can provide support as desired. They can examine the captured vibration and oil condition data and provide concrete instructions in order to avoid downtimes on ZSK extrusion machinery. Moreover, necessary maintenance tasks can be planned in advance together with service experts from Coperion. Disruptions in production due to service calls can thus be reduced to a minimum and overall ZSK extruder efficiency can be maximized.