Project Description

EastLink is a tolled section of the M3 freeway linking a large number of the eastern and south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. It is a part of Melbourne’s Metropolitan Ring Road. The roadway boasts 2 underground tunnels tunnels. The Mullum Mullum and Melba tunnels enable vehicles to pass under the Mullum Mullum valley, without affecting the wildlife and sensitive landscape above. The 1.6km long tunnels are designed for vehicles up to 4.65m in height, and contain sophisticated safety and environmental protection features.

There are 24 Jet Fans in the Connecteast Eastlink tunnels. The Jet Fans are essential to keep air moving through the tunnel and to operate in the event of fire and other emergencies. The fans can only be accessed during a total tunnel shutdown meaning there are only four opportunities throughout the year to perform maintenance. Closure of the roadway has significant impacts to operational and maintenance contracts as well as causing major disruption to motorists and transportation operators, thus these fans have a very high criticality.

Furthermore, knowing the condition of these fans at all times is crucial to ensuring efficient operation and reducing maintenance and operational costs. Traditional monitoring at fixed intervals only allowed measurements to be taken on the jet fan body, resulting in a very poor analysis of these fans. Remote monitoring points should be installed for this type of monitoring to continue.

Broadspectrum installed Minnovation’s MHM Gateways (Machine Health Monitor) and VIBX1600 accelerometers on these fans to monitor the condition of the fan bearings. The accelerometers are mounted on the fan body itself and the MHM gateway is mounted on the outside of the Jet fan housing to allow for transmission of the wireless signal. The MHM processes the raw data at the “edge” to determine the vibration zone according to ISO10816 thresholds. Data is also transmitted wirelessly to the AlphaX cloud services where data is post-processed and assessed against alarming levels.

In the event that an alarm is triggered the system will send email and SMS alerts to the roadway control room for immediate action by the operational teams.

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