Textile mills can save energy by maintaining ring frame tin roller bearings with specialty grease, says Ashok Sethuraman.
In any industrial equipment, the motor is coupled to the machine by the belt and couplings involving a couple of bearings. But the ring frame needs 40 to 50 bearings set in a tin roller to transmit power from motor to load.
What are the savings in the mill's electricity consumption?
The empirical thumb rule for any textile spinning mill is that ring frames consume around half the mill's monthly electricity bill. If we save around 6 per cent on existing running frames, this works out to 3 per cent saving in mill's monthly electricity bill at no cost except spending on specialty grease. This can be implemented by zero and low cost measures to achieve the savings in ring frames. This will create scope for savings and motor loading and can be used to improve ring frame productivity.
45 NPPB tin roller bearings after removing the dried and caked grease lump, result of repeated re-greasing of MP3 grease
How can this energy be saved in the ring frame?
Mills frequently record the relative condition KWH (Kilo Watt Hour) of ring frames for the same count show >10 per cent variation. One major reason for excess consumption in a frame is the tin roller bearings which consume too much power. Actually, the tin roller bearing is the starting point of power distribution to each batch of 24 spindles x 50 or 1200 spindles. The grease in the tin roller bearing dries out and hardens in a few months and consumes more power. The tin roller system consumes around 12 per cent power of the ring frame first, and then allows the power to reach the spindles.
The root cause of the problem is tin roller bearings come to the mill with factory- sealed multipurpose grease. Later, we re-grease the same multipurpose grease once in six months. That amounts to a lot of grease over the years as the earlier grease is not removed from the drain plug. With time, the grease supply tubing gets choked and the bearing's grease dries. Suitable replacements include Polyuria-based Lithium grease, under brand names like Mobil PolyrexEM, SKF LGHP2 or ONWO Polytek grease priced at ₹800/kg. The specialty of this grease is shear stress stability, longer grease consistency and extended re-greasing intervals.