An energy producer recently approached us with a large number of complex control cabinets for urgent refurbishment. Each the size of a large bar fridge, these water-cooled cabinets were filled with smart electronics to control Megawatts of outgoing electrical power.
As the equipment was mission critical, and the overseas manufacturer only wanted to sell new with 4 months delivery, our client was desperate.
With hundreds requiring refurbishment, the time to process each was unfeasible even with our state-of-the-art automated diagnostic tools. The cabinets had no tech. documentation or schematics, so our engineers needed a different approach.
Diagnostics with a bespoke computer tablet connected to the cabinet could give us the fault data but due to the high voltages, this was uneconomical. So, our team designed a handheld computerised testing device tailored for these cabinets. We now were able to automatically test each cabinet system, so full diagnostics was 3 mins, not 3 days. The answer provided fault location, a component or PCB issue and if was repeatable or intermittent.
Our refurbishment time was 1 week and we provide a full 2 years warranty with all refurbishments.
With this innovation, Rom Control proved itself as a game changer for urgent repairs. It’s all about speed, years of experience, and reliability. Contact us on 1300 766 297 or www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us to discuss your need.
A Danfoss FCD 3.3Kw (5Hp) VSD arrived recently from a client for repair. We were told that the client’s maintenance crew attempted a repair on the circuit board but did further damage trying to remove the conformal coating. On dismantling, we found the circuit board was badly scratched and a few electronic components broken. Unfortunately their heavy handed trades person almost destroyed the PCB by firstly attempting to remove the coating mechanically.
So what is Conformal Coating you might ask? It is a protective layer of film applied over circuit boards and is usually a two-pack resin, an acrylic resin, silicone or Parylene. The coating helps prevents corrosion, mechanical damage, etc. and must be removed to diagnose and replace faulty electronic components. An appropriate chemical that is inert to the circuit board and components, or light heating, is the best way we have found to remove the coating. Scrapping and sanding is strongly discouraged.
After many years, Rom-Control has had to developed specific techniques with non hazard chemicals to remove the coating. So do your research before reaching for a sharp knife or sandpaper.
After much re-construction, we did clean and re-build our client’s VSD thankfully as this particular drive was discontinued many years ago. Now their machine is up and running at full speed.
I recently had coffee with a client who mentioned he had a problem with a new welding robot. Recently it needed two or three attempts to initialize before it was ready but that morning, it took five attempts. The HMI kept reporting a different ‘random’ computer error.
Familiar with this type of fault, I suggested it’s an electronic issue which we need to look at. As expected, we discovered aging faults on many circuit boards. After we refurbished the electronics, the robot initialized immediately. My client was amazed and wanted to know how I knew.
From our experience, we know the five basic signs that your industrial logic circuit board (PLC, power supply, VSD, etc.) is going bad.
- Random Error Codes or warning beeps.
- Power indicators are slow to glow, flickering, or don’t come.
- Random data errors on HMIs, counters, printouts, etc.
- Random booting issues, the electronics appear to possess little gremlins.
- A smoldering electronic smell.
So what should you do if you suspect a logic board is failing? Sometimes a replacement electronic board might be an option but more often than not, you may have to modify the board or machine to make it fit, or there may be other configuration issues. It is usually far simpler and safer to have the original boards refurbished.
If you wish to discuss further, contact us at email@example.com or send us a message at https://www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us/ to discuss.
Last week Rom-Control attended the Queensland Mining Health and Safety Conference 2023 in Broadbeach Queensland. With well over 1000 delegates, the conference was a huge success with presentations from industry experts over a range of topics. Many organizations connected with Rom-Control to discuss their needs in relation to minimizing asset ownership cost and extending the life of their automated machinery.
Did you ever look for an electronic spare part, and you plugged it in, and it just didn’t work?
This happened recently to our client in the middle of a production run. The monitor mounted on the machine control panel went blank suddenly and the machine just stopped. The client didn’t realize the monitor had an integrated PLC that controlled the full operation of the machine so when the monitor stopped, so did the production run. Our client plugged in their spare monitor but as it was brand new, the machine program had not been installed so this avenue of repair was a dead end. After the screams died down, our client brought us the monitor which we realized is an intelligent Krone iPanel.
After dismantling, we found water damage which had affected a significant portion of the circuitry. The water ingress must have been over a long period as the damage included rusted connector plugs and many grounded ICs and capacitors. Amazingly we also found the short circuit cascaded through much of the other circuitry even though there was no burn or soot deposits.
To refurbish the iPanel, many of the discrete electronic parts had to be removed and the board reconstructed. Great care had to be taken to ensure the program was kept intact especially during the cleaning and power up stages of the refurbishment. The panel was recently installed back into the client’s machine and everything started up perfectly. A copy of the program was taken so this situation shouldn’t happen again.
Our client was extremely happy as he thought the entire mulit-million dollar machine would be rendered useless and we were able to bring it back to life. We have now been asked to audit the other iPanels installed in other machines as a Preventative Maintenance routine.
If you have invested in spares but not sure if they still work, or any other equipment that requires repair or refurbishment, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a message at https://www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us/
Welcome to Rom-Control Pty. Ltd. who will be joining us at the Australia Wind Energy 2023 #AuWE2023 as an exhibitor at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre. Come and say hello to them at booth W02.
→ #AuWE2023 Uniting the Wind Energy Value Chain ←
The main business area of Rom-Control is Industrial Electronic and Control System Repairs. they have over 1000 clients ranging from multi-nationals to sole operators.
a) Established over 16 years
b) Highly trained and experienced staff
c) Largest company in the southern hemisphere repairing industrial electronics
Rom-control is delighted to announce that we will be speaking at the @cleanenergycouncil Australian Wind Industry Summit, 4th May alongside some of the state’s best and brightest in the renewables industry. Rom-Control will be part of a panel discussing the subject on Keeping The Show On The Road which will explore how best practice operations and management can protect revenue generation and social licence. Alongside Rom-Control, the other panelists will include;
- Jacqueline Plant, Special Council practicing as environment and planning lawyer,
- Richard Sharp, Consultant and expert in environmental best practice to asset operations and maintenance
- Daniel Liu, Product development and research lead into asset performance benchmarking, cost analysis and valuations
Rom-Control will present on Best Practice Asset Management which will center around considerations to reduce overall maintenance costs whilst increasing reliability and productivity.
Rom-Control was established over 16 years ago to repair and refurbish all makes and models of electronic control systems. Our significant involvement in the past few years within the renewable energy sector has proven our skills in maintaining large generation and conversion electronic systems. Rom-Control is considered an expert by many in the renewable energy sector in the repair and refurbishment of both onshore and offshore wind generators, and large scale solar generation installations. If you wish to know more or to discuss your needs, call us on 1300 766 287 or rom-control.com.au/contact-us/
Representing over 1000 members Australia wide, the Clean Energy Council have accepted Rom-Control as a full member in recognition of our work in ensuring affordable Renewable Energy around Australia. Rom-Control is the forefront in maintaining and refurbishing both solar and wind farm generation electronic equipment such as Inverters, Converters and Power monitoring and associated Systems.
Over the past 15 years, Australia has invested significantly into renewable energy generation in both wind and solar farms around rural landmarks such as townships and satellite cities. Within this aging infrastructure, Inverters and Converters as large as 6 Megawatt are experiencing reliability issues with failing inverters and power conditioning and monitoring equipment. Rom-Control saw this as a risk to future Australian energy generation and set about developing the technology and expertise to economically maintain this equipment.
Rom-Control can repair and refurbish all types of renewable energy generation systems irrespective of age or manufacturer such as Vestas, Semikron, Goldwind, Suzlon, Siemens, etc. Our experience includes both on-shore and off-shore wind farms, and all forms of solar and geotechnical generation farms.
If you wish to talk to us further about how we can assist your organization, either telephone us on 1300 766 287 or click on www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us to message us for more information.
Many of our clients think that the heart of their machinery is the power supply. Not true as it is usually the humble cooling fan.
Quietly working in the background to keep your electrical cabinets cool, no one remembers to keep them clean and ensure they are serviceable. A failing fan can be costly in both time and money which is why we at Rom-Control have been kept so busy over the past 16 years. Failing cabinet cooling fans provide us, Rom-Control, with the majority of our work. So here are a few tips to consider about replacing and maintaining cabinet cooling fans;
Miscalculating CFM Requirements
The cubic feet per minutes (CFM) is one of the most crucial factors to consider. The fan needs to provide enough airflow to remove the heat load of the equipment installed, plus the heat generated by other sources in the enclosure such as solar, cabling, power supplies, etc.
Equipment Layout and System Resistance
Every item inside a cabinet can impede the airflow (CFM) including air filters in and out of the cabinet. Just the filter itself can reduces the airflow CFM by 33%. Ensure new equipment in the cabinet does not restrict the overall airflow and consider upgrading the fan to a higher CFM if necessary.
If the equipment inside the cabinet operates at temperatures slightly higher than the ambient temperature, then a cooling fan should be all that is needed.
Trying to Save on Necessary Accessories
Cooling fans are an economical way to providing the essential temperature control for electrical equipment. However, you don’t want to make the mistake of purchasing cheap accessories such as filters, Vent Shroud kits or thermostats.
If you wish to talk to us further about how we can assist in your project, either telephone us on 1300 766 287 or click on www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us to message us for more information.
Wind and Solar Farms are now a common part of the Australian landscape. Usually located around townships and satellite cities, todays computerized control technology ensure their installation is efficient, quiet and can provide a major portion of the required local household electricity. Within these complicated control systems, age and environmental conditions have taken its toll and most of the inverters are out of warranty. Hence Rom-Control have seen a significant increase in inverter/converter repairs and refurbishments particularly in the last few years.
For this reason, we thought in this blog it might be fun to share some fun Wind Farm facts from synergy.net.au
If you have any questions about the repair or refurbishment of either wind or solar farm equipment, including blade control systems, inverters/converters, etc, contact us at www.rom-control.com.au/contact-us or email us at email@example.com
- Wind turbines look simple but they are actually very complex – In fact, a single wind turbine has around 8,000 different parts.
- Wind turbines can stand taller than the Sydney Opera House – A typical tower is around 60 metres tall. Add the enormous blades and the turbine can end up standing 80 to 90 metres tall.
- Wind could power the world – It would only take around 3.9 million turbines to become a reality according to an article by Business Insider, using typical-sized turbines, that kind of number would take up a space just slightly smaller than Spain.
- Wind is getting cheaper – Automation has enabled the cost of wind energy to drop 90% since the 1980s. As technology gets smarter, we’re harnessing the power of the wind in cheaper and more efficient ways.
- Wind energy is the fastest-growing renewable energy source – According to Geoscience Australia the wind energy industry is expected to continue to grow rapidly over the next decade. Currently most of it is happening in the US and Europe, but China and India are showing rapid growth as well.
- Wind technology is now much more bird-friendly – Earlier versions of wind farms, such as the ones first launched in the US, had thousands of small fast-spinning turbines. Not so good for birds. Now, wind farms have taller and slower-moving blades which are much nicer for our feathered friends.
- Wind turbines are getting quieter – It’s no surprise that the noise a wind turbine makes depends on how close you are. According to GE Reports, a wind turbine would usually be placed at least 300 metres away from a home which would give it a sound pressure level of 43 decibels, between the noise of your fridge and your air conditioner.