4S1: The Key to Machinery Reliability

Tod M Baer , Production Specialist IV - Reliability, Minnkota Power Cooperative Inc.


Is your equipment operating smoothly, reliably (10+ years MTBF) and not impacting the O&M budget with unplanned failures? If the answer is yes, then great you’ve found the key!If not, this presentation will provide information on the use of vibration analysis and other tools to help understand and create machinery reliability.Discoveries and lessons learned over the past 25 years will be presented which led to finding the key that opened the treasure chest of reliability. The goal of this presentation is to help others use vibration analysis and other tools to discover their own key to the reliability tool chest. The presenter will provide all attendees key documents that will help unlock the reliability treasure chest.


Tod currently holds the position of Production Specialist IV – Reliability at Minnkota Power’s coal-fired generating facilities located at Center ND. Minnkota Power Cooperative Inc, is a generation and transmission utility which serves 11 member-owner cooperatives located in eastern North Dakota and western Minnesota. Tod has been working in the reliability centered maintenance field since 1983 at the facility. His current responsibilities are managing and overseeing the facility’s Reliability Program which includes the PD/PM Program, Loss Elimination, RCA, Asset Control and Care Process. He is very passionate about Pd, PM and RCM, as a practitioner, instructor and mentor in the fields of vibration, lubrication, ultrasonics, thermography, RCFA and precision maintenance. In the mid 1980’s he was the driving force in the development and implementation of Minnkota Power’s Pd/PM program, and supervised Minnkota’s Pd/PM team. In the 1990’s, using information obtained from the Pd/PM, CMMS and RCA programs Tod justified the need to adapt precision maintenance philosophies into the facility’s maintenance program. Today, Minnkota Power’s, Asset Reliability Maintenance Program, incorporates most maintenance philosophies and technologies. The evolving 40 year old maintenance program has been very successful and has played an important role in the power plants’ success as a cost effective, reliable energy producer. The program and the individuals championing the program have served as a guidepost to others seeking similar results.