Online magnetic flux monitoring via permanently installed air-gap flux probes is a well- established technology to determine the presence of shorted turns in a turbine generator rotor winding. Flux measurements are normally performed using flux probes installed in the machine air gap (on a stator wedge) and connected to portable or permanently installed instruments. In this “flux probe” test, to achieve a reliable diagnostic results, the signal from the flux probe has to be measured under different load conditions ranging from no load to full load. This requirement presents a serious obstacle when applying this method on base load units.
Recently, a new design of magnetic flux probe installed on the stator tooth was implemented. In addition, new algorithms used to analyze measurements using different types of flux probes were developed to minimize the need for tests at different load conditions. A finite element model (FEM) has been created to verify these new algorithms in different loading conditions. Based on this model, and real-world measurements, it has been demonstrated that accurate detection of shorted turns can be obtained without the need to vary the load on the machine if suitable sensors and algorithms are applied. This paper describes the new method and its advantages, comparing results obtained from online measurements on working generators and the FEM created to simulate different rotor conditions.