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Condition monitoring

Condition monitoring

At ALS, we understand the value of Condition Monitoring and offer broad services to accommodate. From vibration concerns to 24/7 asset monitoring, our all-encompassing Condition Monitoring service range is able to answer your broad condition monitoring questions and provide ongoing solutions.

Condition_Monitoring

Acceptance Testing

Acceptance Testing is an quality assurance function, performed to give asset owners complete confidence in their critical equipment’s compliance and long-term durability.

The cost of transporting and installing critical equipment to site can prove extremely costly and resource intensive. The last thing that an asset owner needs to learn on the start-up of equipment is that a fault is present which could result in costly down-time and potentially, a loss of production.

Within ALS’s condition monitoring services, we offer a cost-effective workshop acceptance testing service, which aligns with the principles of ISO acceptance codes to steer clear of vibration anomalies. Performed at workshops and site facilities, this testing is designed to identify any potential faults on rotating assets that warrants urgent attention prior to the equipment being transported and commissioned.

Applications for workshop acceptance testing includes, but is not limited to:

  • Gearboxes
  • Pumps
  • Motors
  • Vibrating screens and exciter gearboxes
  • Conveyor pulleys
  • Locomotive traction motors
  • Fans and flywheels

Methods include:>

  • Vibration
  • Thermography
  • Noise
  • Acoustic Emission
  • Motion Amplification

Laser Alignment and Dynamic Balancing

ALS provides Laser Alignment and Dynamic Balancing services to set your rotating equipment assets up for maximum life.

When considering the causes for equipment failure and associated downtime, machine misalignment and imbalance are characteristically among the top concerns. Machine unbalance and misalignment can result in excessive wear on bearings and seals, fatigue of shaft and coupling, vibration issues, lowered machine performance, degradation of parts and a reduced asset lifespan.

ALS’s condition monitoring services are equipped to determine when rotating equipment encounter misalignment or become out of balance, both of which commonly occur with rotating equipment. When such issues arise, ALS inspectors use laser alignment and dynamic balancing services to return assets to their correct state.

Our ISO certified technicians can complete in-situ balancing and in-field alignment via a method and at a location convenient to your operation. Having the ability to perform the technique day or night, downtime and disruption to operational scheduling is minimised.

Motion Amplification®

Motion Amplification® is a video-processing solution that brings extremely subtle movement to life. Used to visualise vibration, misalignment, looseness and deflection shapes beyond the naked eye’s capability, it is the video solution that allows technicians, engineers and asset owners to view vibration in an MP4 video format.

Motion Amplification® captures movement using RDI’s Iris M, and can be conducted on an array of assets, including:

  • Rotating machinery and components
  • Tubing, piping and process lines
  • Mechanical seals
  • Vessels and tanks
  • Structural components and assemblies

Motion Amplification® has proven a critical tool for visualising and communicating vibration concerns. It assists technicians, engineers and clients with analysing the root cause of a problem with applications beyond the visualisation capabilities of traditional vibration analysis techniques.

Motion Amplification® has applications detecting issues such as structural cracking, operational deflection shapes, relative movement between machinery components, and in the assessment of assets not accessible for contact vibration measurements.

Online Condition Monitoring

Online Condition Monitoring systems deliver absolute confidence in knowing how your assets are behaving, 24/7.

Online Condition Monitoring provides asset owners with unparalleled confidence and valuable tools to ensure plant operation remains optimised. Equipped to alert for potential failures and the ability indicate increased risk areas, online condition monitoring provides a machine’s health with ongoing attention.

ALS has the capability to design bespoke online condition monitoring systems that comprehensively collect data 24/7 as required. These systems include alarm processes which notify the relevant parties in the event of a critical issue.

ALS also offers cost effective systems that survey equipment for changes in vibration levels. When detected, alarms indicate potential problems which can be followed up immediately by our expert staff or the client’s staff alike.

Online Condition Monitoring can be used for rotating equipment including:

  • Mills
  • Fans
  • Motors
  • Bearings
  • Gearboxes
  • Pumps
  • Turbines

Advantages of Online Condition Monitoring

Continuous monitoring provides a heightened confidence due to the uninterrupted nature of the data collection.

Other advantages include:

  • Around the clock data collection which is not dependent on a technician being present on-site.
  • Greater confidence that no emergent faults will be overlooked due to data collection.
  • Ability to capture intermittent process disturbances affecting equipment reliability, thereby allowing the ability to extend equipment life and foresee signs of potential failure.
  • Reduced risk with the lowered need for inspections of asset's at heights, or in remote or confined spaces.
  • Reduced stress of maintenance staff.

Strain Gauge Measurements

Despite continued advancements in simulation modelling methods, strain gauge measurements remain important in determining actual strains developed in assets during testing and in-service operation.

The measurement of strain is a fundamentally simple, yet effective and accurate technique to record the strain that develops in components when loads are applied to them.

Strain gauges have application across almost any type of asset, with some examples being:

  • Civil structures, such as bridges, overpass, steel and concrete buildings and various process building in mining, oil and gas.
  • Product loading structures, such as ship loaders and container cranes.
  • Shaft torsion measurements to determine both torque loads and torsional oscillations.
  • Crushing plants
  • Pipeline vibration
  • Cranes and lifting equipment, an area in which ALS maintains LEEA (Lifting Equipment Engineers Association) developmental membership.

Advantages of Strain Gauges

The main advantages of testing via strain gauges include:

  • Determining asset response under variable and unknown load conditions, such as materials bulk handling, excavation and mobile equipment.
  • Determining loads applied, such as axial, bending or torsion.
  • Providing high precision measurements.

Strain gauges themselves are typically both small, inexpensive and their use does not damage the asset being tested.

ALS' engineers combine strain measurement with vibration measurement and advanced simulation tools such as FEA to help customers identify and resolve structural challenges with industrial assets.

Thermography

Thermography is an online, non-destructive, non-contact monitoring and diagnostic technique that provides valuable insights into an asset’s condition. With this insight, the necessary maintenance and monitoring can be scheduled, and optimal asset output can be maintained.

Thermography is a valued diagnostic tool that is critical to understanding condition across a broad range of assets.

Some typical applications include the identification of:

  • Scale and build-up in tanks and pipes.
  • Erosion inside internally lined or internally coated pipelines.
  • Pipeline blockages.
  • Electrical faults and high resistance connections in switchboards, transformers, cables and other electrical components.
  • Loss of insulation materials (e.g. Refractory) in high or low temperature process equipment.
  • Damage to rotating equipment, particularly from rubs, lubrication, electrical and cooling issues.
  • Pipeline leaks of hot and cold fluids, including gases (hydrocarbon) not visible to the naked eye.
  • Cooling circuit blockages and/or heat exchanger inefficiencies.
  • Conveyor idler defects.

ALS' ISO certified thermographers have access to the latest thermography equipment, including UAV mounted solutions.

Ultrasound Based Lubrication

Monitor your asset’s lubrication effectively with ALS’s Ultrasound Based Lubrication Services.

Bearing failures are continually linked with lubrication related issues. Whether caused by over- or under-lubrication, or an incorrect lubrication use or management, the consequences of premature bearing failure can snowball to equipment failure, costly remedial work and unplanned downtime. With ultrasound technology ALS can optimise lubrication doses and intervals so that your industrial assets are lubricated optimally and set up to achieve the maximum life.

Vibration Analysis

Vibration Analysis is a key condition monitoring technique given its versatility detecting a wide range of failure modes.

ALS offers a cost-effective vibration analysis and monitoring service which closely aligns with the principles of ISO 13373. Vibration analysis can be performed on both rotating and static equipment, and used to monitor for three key considerations:

  1. Surprise-free asset performance - detecting vibration anomalies, providing diagnosis and prognosis;
  2. Cost effective maintenance planning evaluation of the overall health condition of the asset, which allows sufficient time for remedial action; and,
  3. Reduced production cost - maintaining the assets at their optimum level.

Utilising industry leading equipment, ALS technicians are certified to ISO 18436 standards and are extensively experienced with equipment reliability, failure modes and symptoms of failure. Our technicians gather vibration data directly from machines and analyse this information both on-site, for rapid interpretation turnaround, and at our ALS facilities.

Through their extensive experience, ALS technicians and engineers can accurately interpret the vibration data, make informed assessments of the condition of an asset and offer practical recommendations for remedial action.

Defects detected through vibration analysis include, but are not limited to:

  • Rotating equipment bearing defects including cracking, spalling, race and cage defects.
  • Gearing defects including cracking, broken tooth, gear misalignment, gear wear and spalling.
  • Lubrication problems.
  • Misalignment of assembled rotating equipment, including gear and shaft misalignment.
  • Unbalanced components including impellers, gears, couplings and shafts.
  • Motor defects.

Abnormalities detected through structures, pipes or vessels experiencing vibration include:

  • Presence and effect of excessive vibration in structures and piping.
  • If excessive vibration is occurring, an engineering assessment of how such vibration may lead to structural fatigue and damage.

Vibration analysis plays a key function in monitoring and diagnosing faults in rotating and static machinery. Through vibration analysis, the loss of equipment due to critical failure is replaced with focused maintenance, and the cost of replacing entire assets is decreased to repair work. Overall, the analysis brings increased safety, revenue and employee efficiency.

ALS also provides accredited vibration analysis training. Contact us further information about our vibration analysis training.