ABB Ability Smart Sensor for Motors

Based on smart sensing technology, it offers condition monitoring for low voltage motors

The ABB Ability™ Smart Sensor for Motors converts traditional motors into smart, wirelessly connected devices. It is attached to the frame of low voltage (LV) induction motors without the need for wiring or machining. Maintenance can now be planned according to actual needs rather than based on generic schedules. This extends equipment life, cuts maintenance costs, and reduces or prevents unplanned downtime due to sensor

Using algorithms, ABB Ability relays information about the motor’s operation and health via a Bluetooth gateway or smartphone to a secure server. The Smart Sensor picks up data on vibration, temperature, and other parameters that can be used to gain meaningful information on the condition and performance of the motor, enabling users to identify inefficiencies within their system and to reduce risks related to operation and maintenance. Data is also tracked over time for trend analysis.

At the heart of the solution is a compact sensor unit that is easily attached to motors without the need for wiring. Selected ranges of ABB LV motors can be factory fitted with the sensors as an option. For already installed motors, retrofit kits are available that enable motors to be field upgraded with sensors. Mounting and configuring the sensors takes only minutes. They are compatible with almost all LV motors, whether new or old, from ABB or other vendors.

The sensor monitors signals from the motor, accurately measuring key parameters at regular intervals. It transfers the data using built-in Bluetooth® low energy technology to a smartphone or ABB gateway and ultimately to a secure cloud-based server. Data communications use industry standard encryption protocols, and all data are stored in the cloud in an encrypted form.

Once users have downloaded the ABB Ability Smart Sensor app they can check the status of their motors at any time with their smartphone. The interface includes a straightforward “traffic light” display to give a quick overview of all the motors that are being monitored. Users also receive clear recommendations on how to optimize maintenance and save costs.

  • RED means critical issue–failure is likely soon. Users should take action as soon as possible.
  • YELLOW means operation can continue but the motor should be watched closely and serviced at the next available opportunity.
  • GREEN means the motor is fine and operation can continue.

When a yellow or red signal is triggered the user can drill down to identify the cause.

ABB Ability comes with a 60-day free trial period. After the trial, a subscription is needed to access the data gathered by the Smart Sensor. Subscriptions are currently available for one or two year periods.