How Did Fort Knox Achieve Zero Engine Failures in 2013?

Thanks to the strong condition based maintenance (CBM) program at Fort Knox, the maintenance team experienced zero catastrophic engine failures during 2013.

The Fort Knox maintenance team started adopting CBM philosophies in 2012. This has included implementing a real-time machine health monitoring system, and training employees with reliability and nondestructive testing of various tools and technology used to track machine health.

Clint Nebeker (Mine Manager, Mobile Maintenance) attributes the success of Fort Knox’s CBM program to the hard work of the maintenance team. “Maintenance activities are performed based on indicators showing the equipment or component is in a failure mode or, has failed to perform to original equipment manufacturer (OEM) specifications. Through real-time tracking, weekly routes and failure mode analysis, the team has been able to predict failures in the earliest stages.”

The average engine costs between US $300,000 to 400,000 and a rebuild can cost approximately 50% of a new engine. By eliminating failure, there were major costs savings associated with the reduction in maintenance work.

In addition to reduced maintenance costs, the CBM program has resulted in reduced unexpected machine and component failures, increased machine uptime and equipment performance predictability.