Compared with their conventional ‘siblings’, brushless alternators offer enormous operational benefits to companies in mining and other industries, Gert Jacobus Roselt, Probe IMT Product Manager explains to African Mining Brief.
In mine engineering circles it is just hard to ignore the inroads brushless alternators have made into the space where ‘conventional’ alternatives have been considered a favourite for years. This phenomenon is underlined by the advantages they bring in line with current mining industry demands, according to Gert Jacobus Roselt, the Product Manager at Probe IMT, suppliers of brushless technologies to various industries.
Why they are the perfect fit
Amongst others, Roselt cites main features that make brushless alternators a perfect fit for 24 volt applications in wheel loaders, graders and mining equipment, namely performance, longer life span, low fuel costs, less downtime and big mounting space.
Capacity is central in brushless alternator’s performance. This feature is evident in the Delco Remy 55SI brushless alternator product which is designed to take on the demanding electrical loads of today’s heavy duty vehicles, Roselt points out. Typically, the 55SI produces up to 430 amps at 12 volts and up to 275 amps at 24 volts.
2. Longer life span
Underlined by high durability and reliability, brushless alternators are highly valued for low maintenance costs, says Roselt. “Fewer moving parts means less wear on the alternator. What you end up with is longer life/without brushes, there are 13 fewer moving parts, eliminating components that wear out, while extending overall products life.”
3. Low fuel costs
Moreover, increasing alternator efficiency can, and will measurably reduce diesel fuel costs, notes Roselt. “Electrical power on a heavy duty truck is not free. It comes as a direct result of consuming fuel within the engine to drive the alternator. High efficiency alternators translate to less engine horsepower requirements, resulting in substantial fuel savings for the fleet.”
4. Less downtime
‘Conventional’ alternators pull air through from the back to the front in order to cool the internal electronics. This causes dust to enter into the alternator. In contrast, with a brushless alternator, there are no issues of dust hanging up brushes, eliminating early failure, reasons Roselt.
“In the main, you are less likely to experience the following problems with brushless alternatives: Stuck Brush, Broken Brush, Brush Bounce, Worn Out Brush, Corroded Slip Ring, Shorted Slip Ring, Broken Brush Spring, Broken Brush Shunt, Grounded Rotor Coil and High Turn-On,” he explains.
5. More engine mounting space
One of the biggest concerns with ordinary alternators is that they take way too much space and are heavier, making engine mounting difficult. On the other hand, brushless alternators are compact, freeing up mounting space.
Less battery charging time with remote sense
New brushless alternators, Delco Remy Alternators, which are equipped with Remote Sense reduce battery charge time by 50% and decrease battery warranty claims by 30%, Roselt informs African Mining Brief. “Remote Sense utilises a second wire that reads the actual voltage at the battery and signals the alternator to increase its voltage output to compensate for the voltage drop, ensuring a constant 14 volts at the battery. The additional voltage forces the current into the battery faster, bringing it to a full state of charge in half the time.”
Remote Sense is ideal for any commercial vehicle that makes frequent stops