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Project: T202700 #03/106

This is an unbiased reference guide to help educate hydro unit owner-operators and technical staff on available hydro machine condition monitoring (MCM) technologies and best practices. Its purpose is to (1) improve general understanding by corporate and technical staff about important MCM issues and their related considerations and; (2) discuss how to apply hydro MCM to improve machine performance safety, reliability, efficiency and availability.

This report is not intended as a detailed, in-depth guide. It instead provides a selection of hydro MCM best practices and authoritative resources. There are many high-level sources of hydro MCM technical information available from numerous vendors and service providers. The purpose of this project is not to replicate this information, but rather to provide a how-to, practical, experience-based guide covering critical hydro MCM considerations for hydro utility units and power stations.

The project scope includes MCM technologies and systems typically found in today’s hydropower plants and provides a state-of-the-art assessment, as applied to the principal powerhouse components of hydro station powerhouses – i.e., the generator, turbine, governor, and exciter. While the report takes a mainstream, practical view of applied hydro MCM, it also includes a discussion of the opportunities for split phase, ozone, and brushgear monitoring, as well as a high-level review of enhanced signal processing of conventional protection and control data (like MW, MVAR, speed and temperatures).


Machine condition monitoring; MCM; hydroelectric; hydropower; generator; turbine; governor; exciter; MCM design, operations, and maintenance; definitions