Vibration analysis is the best all-around technology for diagnosing and predicting problems in rotating machinery. Over the years I have seen time and time again where adopters of this technology have saved themselves and their companies countless man-hours and thousands of dollars by getting to the root cause of a problem early on. By analyzing the data, they are able to schedule their valuable time on the right problem on the right machine long before the problem escalates into a major outage or emergency. But too many companies have not adopted vibration analysis. While it is true that one could spend many years learning the skills of the multiple levels of the vibration analysis disciplines, it is also true that even a basic understanding of the relationship between the time waveform and the spectrum can yield huge benefits and savings to a new user.
For example, the root cause of most roller bearing/seal failures is either shaft misalignment or rotor imbalance, which can take months to develop. It is also the most common problem analyzed within most facilities in the first two years of vibration analysis implementation. The good news is that misalignment and rotor imbalance are the easiest problems to diagnose by observing a high amplitude 1× running speed frequency in the spectrum. After that, a phase analysis with your analyzer can easily differentiate between misalignment or an imbalance problem and quickly completed without shutting down the machine.
We all know that Rome wasn’t built in a day but we all must start somewhere and just a few days in an analysis class could yield major benefits to new companies.
Thanks to Jay Gensheimer with Solute LLC for this valuable post.