http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.29Change: -0.09
R/$ = 11.70Change: -0.05
Au 1207.85 $/ozChange: 1.57
Pt 1174.50 $/ozChange: -1.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
May 18, 2012

Supplier questions utility’s maintenance procedures, Eskom denies claims

Back
Sekela Bearings technical manager Warwick Steinhobel discusses the company's concerns about Eskom's Grootvlei power station. Cameraperson: Nicholas Boyd. Editing: Darlene Creamer.
 
 
 
Africa|Components|Eskom|Projects|Sekela Bearings|System|Africa|South Africa|Arnot Power Station|Arnot Station|Grootvlei|Grootvlei Power Station|Maintenance|Product|Service|Split Bearings Supplier|Malusi Gigaba|Power|Steinhobel|Warwick Steinhobe|Bearing|Bearings|Cast Iron|Eskom|Floor Vibration
Africa|Components|Eskom|Projects|System|Africa|||Maintenance|Service||Power||Bearing|Bearings|
africa-company|components|eskom|projects|sekela-bearings|system|africa|south-africa|arnot-power-station|arnot-station|grootvlei-facility|grootvlei-power-station|maintenance|product|service|split-bearings-supplier|malusi-gigaba|power|steinhobel-person|warwick-steinhobe|bearing|bearings|cast-iron|eskom-product|floor-vibration
© Reuse this



Split bearings supplier Sekela Bearings says it has a product that will reduce what it claims to be an unusually high bearings consumption at State-owned power utility Eskom’s Arnot power station, in Mpumalanga.


Sekela Bearings technical manager Warwick Steinhobel says bearing consumption at the utility’s Arnot power station is unusually high, owing to floor vibration that causes damage to the cast iron bearing components used in the seal-air fans.

“Seal-air fans are two-stage fans and the bearings sit between the impellers, so you cannot strip it, which is why split bearings are used,” he explains, adding that the bottom part of these bearings cannot be changed, as it cannot be removed from the fan.

Steinhobel alleges that the cast iron bearings base used in the Arnot station’s seal-air fans becomes damaged or breaks, damaging the rest of the bearing parts; however, as Eskom is unable to replace the entire bearing, it replaces only the top part.

“Eskom is fitting brand-new bearings to damaged cast iron, which is why the bearings do not last, resulting in the high bearings consumption,” he claims.


He states that Sekela Bearings has developed its SNQ support bearings to mitigate this problem at the power station.

The SNQ support bearings will, unlike standard support bearings, enable the replacement of the entire bearing, says Steinhobel.

“We believe that, with our product, Eskom’s bearings consumption will be reduced dramatically, which we believe currently amounts to about 15 to 20 bearings a year for Arnot.”

Sekela Bearings has approached the power utility with this solution, but says the utility has not shown an interest in buying the product.

Eskom denies that the utility is wasteful in terms of bearing consumption at the Arnot power station.

“There are 72 seal-air fan bearings in service at Arnot power station. During the last year, the station only had three failures. The bearing replacement cost was R23 000 and the replacement time was about three hours for each incident. These failures had no impact on production, as the spare mill was put in service,” the utility states.

Meanwhile, Steinhobel says Sekela Bearings also offers a type of bearing, which was used in the Grootvlei power station, in Mpumalanga, before it was mothballed in 1989/90


The six units at the Grootvlei power station were mothballed between 1989 and 1990, owing to surplus electricity generation capacity in South Africa; however, its six 200 MW units were demothballed by the end of 2011 as part of Eskom’s return-to-service projects.

“When Eskom closed the Grootvlei power station, it sold off all the spares. I have managed to get my hands on some of the bearing spares.”

Steinhobel claims that one of the spares was specially made for the Grootvlei power station and is not manufactured anywhere else in the world. It is used in the Rothemühle air heater of the power station.

“We believe that the bearings currently in service at Grootvlei have been patched and are damaged.”

Eskom also denies this claim, saying that, while the utility may sometimes switch parts between power stations to save costs, it ensures that all power station components are well maintained.

In January 2011, Eskom launched its quarterly State of the Power System briefings, in line with its commitment to keep stakeholders informed about the state of South Africa’s power system


Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba said, in February, that the utility had a highly developed maintenance policy designed to ensure that areas at risk are dealt with in order of priority through a consistent schedule of maintenance and inspection work across its fleet of power stations.

Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Electricity News
Updated 5 hours ago The $200-million ‘loop line 1’ project to expand the capacity of the gas pipeline from Mozambique to South Africa has been completed, the Republic of Mozambique Pipeline Investments Company (Rompco) has confirmed. Rompco is the gas transport joint venture set up in...
Areva South Africa MD Dr Yves Guenon
Updated 5 hours ago French nuclear vendor Areva says its value proposition for South Africa’s proposed new nuclear build programme remains intact, despite far-reaching restructuring initiatives being undertaken at the troubled State-owned company, which reported a €4.8-billion loss for...
South Africa's hopes of becoming one of the world's top renewable energy hubs are dimming due to poor infrastructure and delays as cash-strapped State utility Eskom is distracted by a scramble to keep the lights on. Chronic electricity shortages are one of the...
More
 
 
Latest News
Updated 4 hours ago Oger Telecom is looking at the possibility of selling its majority stake in Cell C, South Africa's third-largest mobile telecoms network operator, the chairman of the Middle Eastern firm told Reuters on Thursday. Goldman Sachs has been appointed by Oger Telecom to...
Updated 5 hours ago South Africa’s national oil company PetroSA, through its subisidiary PetroSA Ghana, has secured a seven-year $150-million reserve-based lending credit facility with a consortium of banks. PetroSA CFO Lindiwe Bakoro said the company was pleased to close this...
Updated 5 hours ago The $200-million ‘loop line 1’ project to expand the capacity of the gas pipeline from Mozambique to South Africa has been completed, the Republic of Mozambique Pipeline Investments Company (Rompco) has confirmed. Rompco is the gas transport joint venture set up in...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Walter Hill
Eqstra Holdings was going to reduce its exposure to contract mining, but it was not yet ready to sell the troubled business, said CEO Walter Hill on Tuesday. He said Eqstra would not sell its contract mining business in a “depressed market”. He said it would be...
Subscribe to Engineering News and Mining Weekly for two years, but only pay for the first year.  The weekly editions of Engineering News and Mining Weekly will be posted to your preferred postal address and also gain access to:
National flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) is in an advanced stage of renegotiating its deal with European airliner manufacturer Airbus to acquire A320 single-aisle (or narrow body) aircraft. The aim is to replace ten of the aircraft still on order with five...
Worldwide, the main thrust in the ports industry over the past decade or more has been to increase efficiency. Traditionally, ports have been run by engineers and mariners and, in the past, increasing a port’s capacity was achieved by expanding the harbour. “That has...
What do you do when an elephant has a toothache? You call Dr Gerhard Steenkamp from the University of Pretoria’s (UP’s) faculty of veterinary science, Onderstepoort, one of only two elephant ‘dentists’ in the world.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96