The monitoring of induction motor starting transients with a view to early fault detection
The aim of this work is to investigate the possibility of detecting faults in a 3 phase Induction motor by monitoring and analysing the transient line current waveform during the starting period. This is a particularly onerous time for the machine and the inter-relationships between parameters such as current, torque, speed and time are very complex. As a result two parallel paths of investigation have been followed, by methods of experimentation and computer simulation. Transient line current signals have been obtained from purpose built test rigs and these signals have been analysed in both the time and frequency domains. In order to assist with the comprehension of this data a sophisticated computer simulation of the induction motor during the starting period has also been developed. Computer simulation of the induction motor has been developed initially using the two and then three phase induction motor voltage equations which are solved by numerical integration. Using these techniques it has been possible to detect small degrees of fault level for both wound and cage rotor machines by analysing the line current waveform during the starting period. Good agreement has been found between the real and simulated data. A range of Digital Signal Processing techniques have been utilised to extract the components indicative of rotor faults. These techniques were at first wideband and highly numerically intensive, some originating from Speech Processing. The final processing techniques were far simpler and selected by analysis of the results from experimental data, both real and simulated.