The Man Behind the Company

Ken is a P.Eng. with a BASc and MASc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Waterloo

Ken is a P.Eng. with a BASc and MASc in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Waterloo. He majored in materials and design, His Master’s thesis was on the wear of CANDU reactor tube materials.

In 1976 he joined Ontario Hydro as a Design Engineer in the Engineering Analysis Group of the Power Equipment Department, Design & Development. He worked on bearings, lubes, seals and EHC fluids for new and existing fossil and nuclear power stations. Also helped prepare corporate standards and design specifications as well as participating in tender reviews and troubleshooting.

Ken left Ontario Hydro in 1993 with a voluntary separation package with his last position as Senior Design Engineer. He now provides support to Canoil, EPRI and power stations directly. He also developed and markets a ‘green’ grease called VSG for hydroelectric stations, MOV Long Life grease for nuclear valve actuators and MOV Extra for commercial valve actuators.

He has given number papers and presentations to Universities and Colleges, MUG (MOV Users Group), STLE  (Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers), PEMAC (Plant Engineers and Maintenance Association of Canada),  Noria and EPRI (Electric Power Research Institute) Ken has contributed to several Lube Notes and was the main contractor for their EHC fluid maintenance and EHC fluid compatibility guides.

Ken is a member of ASTM D2 on lubricants, has represented Canada on IEC and ISO workgroups on EHC fluids and turbine oils.

He is a Life Member and Fellow of the Chicago based Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE) plus is a Certified Lubrication Specialist (CLS).

Main Products & Services

VSG canoil oil based grease for hydroelectric stations and other applications where a proven ‘green’ grease is advantageous.

MOV Long Life and Extra greases for nuclear and commercial motor operated valves.

EHC (electrohydraulic control) fluid technical support and troubleshooting for steam turbine control systems at electric power stations.

Accomplishments with Ontario Hydro

With the existing bearing used an innovative pressure dam geometry that solved serious problems with failures. This was for the LP steam turbines on eight 500 MW units at a large coal fired station. The estimated savings were $4.4 million.

Prepared separate reports on the inservice requirements for steam turbine oils and phosphate ester control fluids. These were very extensive and required contact with suppliers, manufacturers, other utilities and the agreement of various stakeholders. These gave limits plus provided guidance on cause and actions.

Organized and provided technical support for the successful use of a non-neurotoxic fire resistant triaryl phosphate ester control fluid. This was the first time that this fluid had been used in North America and the first time in the world that it had been used in that manufacturer’s turbines.

Championed the successful use of synthesized lubricants in gas turbines for emergency and standby power. This eliminated winter start problems with the previous oils and has improved start reliability. This was the first such use in Canada for these lubes and also in the world for one of the power turbine suppliers.

Prepared for the Candu Owners Group a bulletin on the maintenance of grease lubricated motor bearings. This provided grease specifics, compatibility data, and calculations for quantities. It also provided information on different grease guns and actual deliveries.

Initiated the first specific use of an energy conserving gear oil. This was in coal pulverizer gearboxes and resulted in a proven savings of 8% in reduced electrical power. This was a synthesized hydrocarbon (SHC) fluid and the payback not including longer service lives was less than six months.

2004 Annual Meeting Award Winners

Publications by Ken Brown