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Refurbishing and repair of voltage regulation cards

11/06/2019 09:34:04
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ImagesClick Image for 300dpi jpg fileRefurbishing and repair of voltage regulation cardsRefurbishing and repair of voltage regulation cards

Design improvements offer better reliability for rail industry

Every train is fitted with alternators to generate electrical power and each one has an automatic voltage regulator (AVR) card that ensures the correct voltage is produced. However, in some cases, reliability has become an issue for these cards, which has led Sulzer to develop a service to repair or redesign and manufacture replacement AVR cards.

The function of an AVR is to maintain the output voltage of a generator at a constant value that is independent of the generator loading or temperature. There are numerous alternator designs used on trains developed by individual manufacturers, and each one uses a different design.

In the event of a fault, AVRs are quite easy to replace as a service item and rail maintenance depots hold spares as a matter of course. However, like-for-like replacement doesn’t get to the root of the problem or improve performance. A pro-active approach is required where the component is analyzed and re-designed to ensure better reliability.

Over the years, there have been numerous manufacturers of alternators supplying the rail industry and this has led to a myriad of different components being used on the national rolling stock fleet. Some of them have since fallen by the wayside, leaving operators little choice but to replace complete alternator assemblies when only the AVR is at fault.

To address this issue, part of Sulzer’s rail engineering team has set up a program to assess, redesign and manufacture replacement AVRs that will offer improved reliability. The aim is to reduce lost availability of rolling stock and to minimize the costs associated with AVR repairs.

Paul Keely, Technical Manager Sulzer Rail Competence Center, explains: “We can assess an existing design, take account of current reliability issues and use this information to design and manufacture a replacement. Using a thorough design and test procedure, an improved design can be created and manufactured to overcome issues with support and supply from OEMs.”

Working closely with rail operators, the design team aims to identify any issues or concerns with the existing AVR designs and create long-lasting solutions that promote reliability.

Image Captions:

Image 1: Sulzer can redesign and manufacture new AVR cards for improved reliability

Image 2: Precision manufacturing using improved components offers benefits over original parts

About Sulzer

Sulzer is the leading worldwide, independent service provider for large rotating equipment. With technically advanced and innovative service and maintenance support solutions, Sulzer provides a turnkey service that provides its customers with the peace of mind to focus on their core operations.

Included in this package is a highly efficient and dependable high-voltage coil manufacturing and supply service, delivered from a purpose built facility within the Birmingham Service Centre, UK. It is recognized for producing very high quality coils for high voltage motors and generators; designed, manufactured and shipped by a highly skilled and dedicated team to ensure fast and reliable service.

With an in-house copper rolling mill, Sulzer customers can benefit from round-the-clock manufacturing to ensure that every coil is delivered on schedule. In conjunction with constant quality control and full HV on-site testing facilities, Sulzer can deliver quality, precision and speed, any time, day or night.

For further information click here or e-mail:, or phone +44 (0)121 766 6161.

The image(s) distributed with this press release may only be used to accompany this copy, and are subject to copyright. Please contact DMA Europa if you wish to license the image for further use.

Editor Contact

DMA Europa Ltd. : Carolin Heel
Tel: +44 (0)1562 751436 Fax: +44 (0)1562 748315

Company Contact

Sulzer : Alex Edwards, Marketing & Communications Manager, Rotating Equipment Services, Sulzer
Tel: +44 (0)121 766 6161 Fax:

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