Enhancing Quality Control of Hydroturbine Runner with Scantech’s 3D Scanning Solution

Enhancing Quality Control of Hydroturbine Runner with Scantech’s 3D Scanning Solution

May 17, 2024

A hydroturbine runner is the core component of a hydroelectric generating unit, responsible for converting water energy into mechanical energy.

It typically consists of the upper crown, runner cone, and blades, with the blade being the most crucial part as its quality directly affects the turbine’s working efficiency and safe operation.

Inspecting the hydroturbine runner manufactured is vital because it frequently suffers from abrasion due to erosion and cavitation during service. Inspections are crucial for detecting flaws that could lead to serious failures if left unaddressed.

ANDRITZ is a globally leading supplier of plants, equipment, automation solutions and services for hydropower stations, the pulp and paper industry, the metalworking and steel industries, as well as environmental and green energy-focused sectors.

The company’s commitment to excellence is evident in its meticulous approach to quality control and inspection.

In this case, ANDRITZ used Scantech’s 3D solutions to inspect a large-sized runner, which requires precise measures for quality control.

Hydro turbine Runner with Scantech's 3D Scanning Solution

Inspect a 4-meter Hydroturbine Runner

The object of inspection is a hydroturbine runner. This particular runner is a machined steel cast part, notable for its substantial dimensions with a diameter of 4320 mm. It weighs around 1000 kg, reflecting the robustness required to withstand the forces it encounters during operation.

Inspection of this runner is imperative to ensure its structural integrity and optimal performance within the power generation system.

Inspect a 4-meter Hydroturbine Runner

Technical Requirements for Inspection with 3D Scanning

The inspection demands an accuracy of up to 30 microns, which is crucial for capturing the finest details of the runner’s complex geometry and ensuring that any potential defects are identified with utmost precision.

Additionally, the entire scanning process must be completed within a 2-hour timeframe, posing a significant challenge in terms of efficiency without compromising the quality of the scan.

Such stringent requirements are essential to maintain the integrity and performance of the hydroturbine runner, which operates under extreme conditions and is pivotal to the energy generation process.

Challenges of Measuring a Hydroturbine Runner

The difficulty of measuring a hydroturbine runner lies in its complex geometry and the need for precise evaluation of defects, such as casting defects, cracks, or voids.

Traditional methods like gauges and plumb lines are time-consuming and often compromise accuracy and repeatability.

Besides that, the part was vertically mounted on a rotary device. The task required the part to be rotated 360 degrees to ensure a comprehensive scan, which posed challenges for precise measurements.

Scantech’s 3D Solutions for Inspections in the Energy Sector

The KSCAN-Magic portable 3D scanner is at the heart of Scantech’s 3D inspection solution, offering portability and the ability to utilize an infrared mode for enhanced scanning capabilities.

This feature is particularly beneficial for capturing the large-scale parts and complex surfaces of the runner. The entire scanning operation is designed to be completed within a 2-hour duration, demonstrating the scanner’s rapid performance without sacrificing accuracy.

Challenges of Measuring a Hydroturbine Runner

Impressively, the results of the scanning process have met the standards required for the project, achieving an accuracy of under 30 microns.

This level of precision is critical for ensuring that the hydroturbine runner is maintained to the highest standards, guaranteeing its reliability and efficiency in energy production.

Advantages of Scantech’s 3D Scanning Solution

Large-area Scanning: Scantech’s KSCAN-Magic has a large-area scanning mode with 11 parallel infrared laser lines, which stands out as a superior solution for scanning large components like hydroturbine runners.

It can scan large areas with its ultimate scanning area reaching 1440 mm * 860 mm, which allows for wide-range measurements with ease.

Accuracy: The KSCAN-Magic 3D laser scanner delivers high-precision scanning capabilities with an accuracy of up to 0.020 mm, effectively eliminating the common issue of data merging errors.

When used with the MSCAN-L15 photogrammetry system, it achieves even higher precision. This ensures that the final 3D model is a true representation of the scanned object, crucial for quality inspections and engineering analyses.


Efficiency: Remarkably, the entire scanning process can be completed within a mere 2 hours thanks to its scanning rate of up to 2,700,000 measurement/s.

This level of efficiency is particularly beneficial in industrial settings where time is of the essence, and downtime can be costly.

Comparison with Other 3D Scanners

Comparison with Other 3D Scanners: In contrast to conventional handheld scanners, which are limited by a small field of view (FOV) and often struggle with data merging errors, the KSCAN-Magic handheld 3D scanner excels.

Traditional scanners face difficulties when scanning large parts, especially in a vertical position during rotation, but Scantech’s solution overcomes these challenges with ease, providing a seamless and error-free scanning experience.

Andritz Hydro Pvt Ltd’s adoption of Scantech’s 3D scanning solution significantly enhanced the efficiency and accuracy of quality control inspections for large, heavy engineering products.

The case demonstrates the superiority of the KSCAN-Magic 3D laser scanner over traditional handheld scanners, particularly for large-scale components requiring high precision.

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Enhancing Quality Control of Hydroturbine Runner with Scantech’s 3D Scanning Solution


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