Exploring multifunctional in the realm of transformer diagnostics

Exploring multifunctional in the realm of transformer diagnostics

Vol. 4 Issue 3

Acquiring diagnostic insight into the condition of an asset through testing has several dimensions. Foremost, testing must be safe. Having diagnostic information should deliver positive net value when weighed against the cost of its acquisition. A test instrument must effectively overcome measuring complexities that are inherent byproducts of a live power system test environment and must consistently deliver representative results.

Central to strengthening a test(s)’s value proposition is to reduce its costs and maximize its value. The savings supplied by multifunctional instruments have spurred their popularity and are considered in this article. Megger’s TRAX multifunctional instrument, specifically, not only delivers on cost reduction but delivers big on maximizing value too. True to the saying “the devil is in the details”, technically differentiating features of the TRAX strengthen its value proposition, particularly with regard to transformer diagnostics. These technical nuances and their importance will be summarized.

Savings in multifunctional

The resultant cost savings is a compelling reason to move away from separate instruments in favour of a multifunctional test set. These include:

  1. Easier usability. Less operator training is required: users of separate instruments need to familiarise themselves with the quirks of each, whereas users of well-designed multifunction test sets enjoy a consistent user interface across all functions, which means that the learning process is simplified.
  2. Easier manageability and transportability. Users of multifunction instruments always have all of the test facilities they need readily at hand; there is never a need to go back to the van or, worse, back to base to fetch another instrument for the next test. Plus, a single multifunction tester is much easier to transport than several individual instruments.
  3. Lower upfront “side-by-side, test for test capability” costs. Multi-functional test sets cost less than the individual instruments that would be needed to cover the same range of testing requirements. Four single-function test instruments = four displays, four user interface systems, four enclosures, etc. = higher total cost than one multifunction instrument with one display, one UI system, one enclosure, etc.
  4. Time savings. Multifunction test sets provide on-going savings by reducing testing time. There is only one instrument to unpack, power up and configure; the same cable set is used for a whole range of measurements, so the connections only need to be made once; and, when carrying out a range of tests, users of multifunction instruments move quickly and easily from app to app, rather than having to go from instrument to instrument.
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