Brush-holder integrated load sensor prototype for SAG grinding mill motor

Miguel Carrasco, Francisco Álvarez, Ramiro Velázquez, Javier Concha, Francisco Pérez-Cotapos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


One of the most widely used electro-mechanical systems in large-scale mining is the electric motor. This device is employed in practically every phase of production. For this reason, it needs to be inspected regularly to maintain maximum operability, thus avoiding unplanned stoppages. In order to identify potential faults, regular check-ups are performed to measure the internal parameters of the components, especially the brushes and brush-holders. Both components must be properly aligned and calibrated to avoid electric arcs to the internal insulation of the motor. Although there is an increasing effort to improve inspection tasks, most inspection procedures are manual, leading to unnecessary costs in inspection time, errors in data entry, and, in extreme cases, measurement errors. This research presents the design, development, and assessment of an integrated measurement prototype for measuring spring tension and other key parameters in brushholders used in electric motors. It aims to provide the mining industry with a new, fully automatic inspection system that will facilitate maintenance and checking. Our development research was carried out specifically on the brush system of a SAG grinding mill motor. These machines commonly use SIEMENS motors; however, the instrument can be easily adapted to any motor by simply changing the physical dimensions of the prototype.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1227
JournalElectronics (Switzerland)
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2019


  • Electrical motor sensor
  • Inspection protocol
  • Mining industry
  • SAG grinding mill motor


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