Why Electrical Machines Fail

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Mike Davis
Principal Technical Authority
machinemonitor®



This presentation will explore the reasons why electrical machines operate one minute then fail the next! Over the decades many studies and surveys have sought to understand the failure processes involved in electrical machine failures.. most studies and focused on the number of component failures without delving into failure indicators and contributors.

Understanding failure indications and contributors is “key” to under unexpected electrical machine failure. A simple “3 step” process will be demonstrated in the presentation supported by case studies to answer the question “Why Electrical Machines Fail”


Mike Davis is an Electrical Engineer with over 40 years experience in rotating equipment. This experience has essentially centred on the repair, redesign and maintenance of electrical rotating plant. In the midst of this experience he has been involved in teaching and tutoring mathematics and the theory of rotating equipment. He has presented numerous conference papers to groups in Australia, New Zealand, South East Asia, USA and South Africa.

During the last 15 years he has developed an intense academic interest in machine failure mechanisms and root cause analysis of electrical machinery failure. This has led to the development of a widely accepted in house one day high voltage machine maintenance course, which has been presented to 50 companies in the last four years. He has been actively involved in several Australian Standard committees and also undertaken a statutory role as an accredited assessing authority for the New South Wales Department of Minerals and Energy.

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