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Eriks has completed significant rework on a large, bespoke-framed fan motor that failed at Rio Tinto Alcan.

The main 920kW 3.3kW motor that failed is used at Rio Tinto Alcan for unloading alumina at the shop-unloading facility.

Its failure meant the company was temporarily unable to restock its UK smelting sites.

The primary issue faced by Rio Tinto Alcan was that it had no spare motor due to its size and a very long normal operating life expectancy.

The unit in question was a special frame size and a replacement was only available from the US with an acceptable lead time attached.

Through Eriks’s intervention and rework, the company was able to prevent an extremely costly situation unfolding.

The first step was for Eriks’s Killingworth engineering facility to collect the motor from the Rio Tinto Alcan site and undertake a strip down.

Following the strip down and subsequent inspection, Eriks implemented a plan to remanufacture a full set of coils, rewind and overhaul the motor on an emergency service basis.

The Killingworth workshop has a copper mill, coil manufacturing facility and a repair facility on the same site, meaning engineers were able to start manufacturing a new set of coils within 24 hours of receiving the motor, using materials from stock.

Eriks engineers then worked around the clock, with the coil and repair facilities working in tandem to reduce downtime to a minimum.

Throughout the entire rework process, Rio Tinto Alcan was given regular updates via e-mail, with pictures of the current progress to allow it to plan for the re-installation of the motor.

The motor was returned to Rio Tinto Alcan’s site six days earlier than the original agreed date.

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