A US-based engineering company who have been a leading innovator in automation and resistance testers for almost 35 years. They are experts in designing, manufacturing and supplying equipment for oilfields, petrochemical industries, refineries, pipelines and utility plants.
The customer had been using analog panel meters in their equipment – protection systems used in motors and generators – for several years but had grown frustrated with the meter’s inherent limitations.
As the panel meters became obsolete, the company recognised an opportunity to find a replacement that not only had the functionality they needed but also met their price point. They were looking for a flexible meter that could be integrated into their equipment and provide functionality and features that would modernize their final product while fitting into the same footprint.
All the other electronic alternatives to analog meters that the customer looked at before the APM were too expensive, so, they approached Trumeter with the idea to customize an APM with features tailored to their requirements.
Working with the account manager and our product development team, the first stage was for us to work with the customer to understand their exact requirements and create a proposal and detailed product specification. The solution was a meter that worked r both a technically and commercially.
The concept was a 4-1/4″ version of our standard meter, capable of measuring from 0 to 200uA at a high side voltage of up to 1000V. It uses the outputs to warn the user if the internal resistance of the motor it is connected to is too low.
It also features customized LED backlighting that changes from green to amber to red to instantly alert the user of motor resistance status. Both alarm and absolute values are also communicated via Modbus, a growing requirement in their industry.
The final custom meter came in at a unit cost less than half that of the meter it was replacing. Taking first delivery in Jan 2019, the benefits included improved delivery reliability and shorter lead times compared to the previous analog meter, which was proving difficult to source. The product also provides an improved user experience from the additional features available and improved interfacing with their systems – including Modbus, a growing need that their customers have that they could not address before.
The company is also expecting significant time savings with the new meter, having previously spent hours calibrating analog meters before shipment. The custom pre-configuration makes it is significantly easier and quicker to setup each meter exactly as required for the finished product.