Internal clearance is critical to bearing performance for multiple reasons. The amount of clearance influences the load distribution in a bearing, which ultimately affects bearing life. It also influences bearing running noise and vibration. In addition, it can influence whether the rolling elements move in a rolling or sliding motion.
Manufacturers worldwide know that Lean maintenance practices cut costs and improve production by minimizing downtime. But the reality is that for many U.S. manufacturers, up to 90% of the maintenance they perform is conducted on a reactive rather than proactive basis. Some blame the age of their equipment, the absence of spare parts and the rapid pace of manufacturing.
Something that worked well for us is if you make a visual change in the project one thing is we talk about planning and scheduling in a reliability of projects. We talk about preventive maintenance and reliability projects. What could easily happen is that you start documenting inspection routes and somebody sits in a corner documenting inspection routes right? We tried to work on our planning and scheduling…it may not be very visual on the floor. So, sometimes it could be a good idea just to make sure it’s okay…let’s pick our top five or top 10 piece of equipment and let’s fix them up.
Organizations that are predominantly reactive typically do not believe it is possible to perform work any other way. Overall, they are frustrated, which in turn impacts morale. Maybe it is a training issue or maybe it is a leadership issue. Either way, it is affecting worker productivity due to the majority of work being unplanned. Unscheduled work also affects job safety. When workers feel rushed, bad things happen. Lastly, those organizations with poor reliability typically waste 10 percent of their revenue.
Current reliability calculations are predisposed to a single failure mode or mechanism and assume a constant failure rate, while research being carried out by the Center for Risk and Reliability at the University of Maryland implies that reliability is a function of the level of damage a system can sustain, with the operational environment, operating conditions and operational envelope determining the rate of damage growth.
One common way of controlling the state-of-health of a piece of equipment is to monitor its vibration signature. High quality data is required, so using high-resolution analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) to acquire and digitize the analog vibration signal is a key enabler to the arena of predictive maintenance.
Drones and reality modeling can and should be part of every maintenance organization and every proactive maintenance workflow to dramatically enhance productivity and safety in infrastructure asset inspections.
Research into bearing failures1 shows that just over half of them are a result of contamination of the bearing oil. Clearly, it is essential to ensure that this is minimized and, if possible, eliminated to achieve the optimum bearing life necessary to improve equipment reliability.
Maintenance personnel go to work and do their jobs taking measurements and writing reports, often with great care and skill. Their reports and recommendations then travel into a deep abyss from which they never return. Sound familiar? This situation is all too common in the condition monitoring (CM) world.