In an important development for the induction heating industry in Asia, Hyderabad-based diagnostic testing specialist Powertest Asia has ordered two EFD Induction bolt expansion systems. The equipment is the first such EFD Induction units to enter service in the rapidly expanding Indian power generation services market.
The systems will be used to remove the bolts securing large turbine covers prior to scheduled inspections and maintenance. The process involves inserting a specially designed inductor into each bolt on the turbine cover. Rapid, precise and controllable non-contact heat is then induced in the bolt. The resulting axial expansion of the bolt allows the nuts to be easily removed.
For Sasant Nuthakki, executive director of Powertest Asia, the main benefit of the EFD Induction bolt expansion solution is the reduction in downtime. “Our customers have very tight downtime windows, so it is critical that the turbines get back to work as soon as possible. Traditional flame and resistance heaters are just too slow and unreliable for our time-conscious customers – so that’s why we started looking at the induction alternative.”
Speed, however, isn’t the only advantage to be gained by opting for induction heating. As Mahesh Gupta, sales manager at EFD Induction India, explains, induction also helps prevent damage to bolt threads: “That’s because induction is so fast that the heat doesn’t get a chance to dissipate into the thread area. Moreover, with induction there’s of course no risk of rods melting inside the bolts, a common problem with other heating methods.”
Powertest Asia is a fast-growing, ISO 9001-certified testing and maintenance specialist for power and industrial equipment. “Much of our growth,” explains Nuthakki, “has been fuelled by us insisting on using only proven, state-of-the-art equipment – and the EFD Induction bolt heating system certainly meets those criteria.”
The Powertest Asia order involves two bolt heating systems, each one powered by an EFD Induction mobile Minac 25/40 converter. “The Minac,” says Gupta, “combines power with mobility. It can be hoisted on to scaffolding or an aerial work platform, but it also delivers a maximum output power of 40kW.”