DoctorKnow® Application Paper

Title: Basic Vibration Primer Source/Author: Brian Overton Product: General Technology: Vibration Classification: Basic Source: BASIC VIBRATION PRIMER By BRIAN OVERTON, CSI Training Instructor In the competitive realm of industry, a company must be able to produce defect-free products while maintaining a competitive price. In order to achieve this goal, cost-effective maintenance must be performed on the machinery used. To keep maintenance costs down, unexpected failures must be minimized or eliminated and all machinery shutdowns for maintenance should be planned. All of these concepts are included in the ReliabilityBased Maintenance TM(RBM)TM philosophy. This philosophy involves the concepts of Preventive, Predictive, and Proactive Maintenance. This paper will primarily focus on the Predictive maintenance technique. Before predictive maintenance came on the scene, most maintenance was performed using either the Run-toFailure or Preventive maintenance philosophies. These philosophies, however, proved to be less cost effective than their successors. By allowing a machine to run until failure, the repair costs escalated dramatically. In general, the repair would involve more repair parts, longer shutdown periods, and more labor to complete. Preventive maintenance allowed a calendar, or some type of schedule to govern the repair work, whether it is needed or not. By performing this type of maintenance, some of the repairs that were being performed were unnecessary. Parts that were in good condition and performing well were being replaced. This caused the repair costs to escalate because of the amount of repair parts being consumed. Also, some of the work took out good parts and replaced them with "new" parts, some with preexisting defects that caused problems in a short period of time. Predictive maintenance then became the new kid on the block, in particular, the vibration monitoring technology. This technology has been around for decades, even though many of today's maintenance personnel tend to think that this is totally new. The use of state-of-the-art digital equipment is relatively new and continuing to improve as time progresses. The remainder of this paper will focus on the discipline of vibration monitoring. It will present some of the basics about establishing a vibration monitoring program as well as discuss some of the basic machinery faults that are detectable with vibration analysis. What is vibration? Vibration is the movement of a body around a reference point. This reference may be the center of a bearing, the center of a shaft, or even the center of a bearing housing. By collecting this information and analyzing the data, we can predict imminent failures of machine components before they actually occur. Vibration analysis is a discipline of Predictive Maintenance and thus is a vital part of the RBMTM philosophy. Other disciplines include thermography, oil analysis, electric motor current monitoring, as well as precision alignment and balancing. Of these disciplines and other process variables that can be monitored, vibration gives the most information about the condition of your machine. An additional benefit is the data is collected while the machine continues its normal operation. Historical Information The earliest use of vibration in industry known to the author would be the creation of the Rathbone Chart (See Appendix A) by Mr. T.C. Rathbone in the 1930's. Mr. Rathbone was an underwriter of insurance for industry.

Before he would underwrite an insurance policy, he wanted to know the mechanical condition of the machine to be insured. Based on casing measurements, RPM of the machine, and the overall vibration measurement, he created the chart that he used to determine the machines condition. The condition of the machine was determined to be very smooth, good, fair, slightly rough, rough, or very rough. This seemed to work well for industry in the 1930's. Just a decade and a half ago, the tools being used in vibration monitoring were analog analyzers. These analyzers provided the operator with an overall vibration measurement. This overall reading was a simple value used to indicate the total amount of energy contained in the machine. Only having one number to base your machines condition on has since been proven to be inaccurate (See Appendix B). At this point in time, this equipment was state-of-the-art. It did beat using the screwdriver or coins to determine the amount of vibration in the monitored machine. The next progressive step taken was to move into the world of digital analyzers. The introduction of the digital analyzers to the vibration discipline opened up many doors for the natural progression and continuous improvement of the vibration analyzers as we know them today. The equipment was at one time very bulky and heavy. Today we have better analytical abilities in our equipment, but at a fraction of the size and weight. Basics of Vibration When establishing a vibration monitoring program, a few basic concepts must be understood. These concepts are the type of transducer to use, where to place the transducer to get the best data, the maximum frequency, resolution to use for data collection, and what data to collect and store. This means there has to be a working knowledge about the available transducers, about the components that make up the machinery being monitored, and what data can be collected. Transducers The most common transducer being employed in industry today is the accelerometer. One of the key reasons for this is the broad frequency response range they have. This range is typically 2 Hz -20 kHz. The maximum frequency is dependent upon the mounting technique utilized for collection. Specialized accelerometers are also available for specific applications, such as low frequency data collection. A large portion of today's accelerometers are called ICP accelerometers. ICP stands for Integrated Circuit Piezoelectric. These types of accelerometers will be resonant at some given frequency, which affects the maximum linear frequency. The mounting technique used for the accelerometer changes the resonant frequency of the accelerometer. We need to keep in mind the three factors that affect the resonant frequencies. Those are mass, stiffness, and damping. The most common mounting techniques available for transducers are stud mounting, quick-lock adapters, magnets, or hand-held. Another type of transducer that is available is the Seismic Velocity transducer. The frequency response range of this transducer is somewhat limited, approximately 10 Hz 2000 Hz. A really big advantage for this transducer is that it does generate its own power for operation. The last of the transducers is the proximity probe, also called a displacement probe or eddy current probe. This transducer is also limited in its frequency response range, about 0 - 1000 Hz. Each of these transducers have its list of advantages and disadvantages from the others (See Appendix C). They each also have applications for which each is more suitable. For this reason, the author feels that an outstanding maintenance program must have more than one transducer available. No one transducer will be able to meet all the needs of an intensive maintenance program. Transducer Placement The location at which the transducers are placed is very important. You must insure that a good transmission path is available from the possible sources of the vibrator energy to the transducers. Keep in mind that the sources of some vibration will travel through other material before reaching the transducer. For example, an inner race defect frequency must travel through the rolling elements, the outer race, and the bearing housing before it reaches the transducer. By this time, the signal is damped and the amplitude appears very low. This explains why much of vibration analysis is pattern recognition and not so much the amplitude of the vibration. Some inner race defects have caused a bearing to fail with amplitudes of .02 - .03 IPS and lower.

if present. or use flat washers as "targets". a more immediate concern is likely. If a small. Some of the faults that are diagnosed using vibration analysis will show a higher amplitude in one direction and a very low amplitude in another. 5 Hp motor is out of balance and exhibits a . If it is vibrating at . there is obviously a large amount of energy in the machinery that needs to be corrected. if a 150 Hp critical motor is out of balance and has a . therefore. You want to avoid the break between the two halves of the bearing housing if a split housing is used. On the other hand. The reasons for the difference is that one is critical and of larger physical size. time domain. Knowing where to place the probe is critical to collecting "good" data. It is highly recommended that two radial readings be collected at each bearing and at least one axial reading be collected per common shaft. Some of these faults. permanent studs. . Another key concept to keep in mind is that the data must be repeatable and collected in the correct plane. it may not cause an immediate concern.5 IPS. End caps are not very rigid and do not provide a good transmission path. quick-disconnects. The data collection points should be marked on the machine in some fashion.5 IPS peak at 1xRPM. avoid using the end caps of motors.5 IPS peak at 1xRPM.Many faults have very discernible patterns in either the frequency domain. Good recommendations are a paint pen. non-critical. Let's look at an example. or both. center punch. you would refer to the amplitude and consider the physical size and application of the equipment before making your recommendations. Any of these methods will help provide repeatability of data collection.

and that the data is meeting your specific needs for analysis. velocity (in/sec). A =0. NO DATA IS WORTH INJURY. you need to understand what data is being collected. The equations for sine waves are as follows: 1.01146 * V * f 3. This is why it is important to insure that you have the correct sensitivity level programmed for the transducer that you are using. The units of display for amplitude levels are acceleration (G's). it remains in the units that it was stored in when in the time domain. Data Collection Now that you know where to place your transducer to collect your data. You may also convert these units from one to the other without having to return to the field for more data collection when in the frequency domain. The raw data that is coming into your analyzer from the transducer is the time waveform. • Use a flat piece to span the cooling fins on motors. This signal is a voltage signal over time. The voltage levels are divided by the sensor sensitivity value that you assign on each measurement point. and displacement (mils). how it is being stored.0031416 * f * D 2. • Allow 3-5 seconds settling time for accelerometers that have been snapped down into position or impacted in any way. V = 0. A = 0.Helpful Hints • ALWAYS USE CAUTION during data collection to prevent accidents. Data collection requires you to go into all areas of your facility and monitor many different types of machinery. Your data may be collected and stored using any of these units. The results of such mathematical process is the units of display that you have selected.00003613 * D * f . Once a waveform is stored.

This is referred to as the period of the cycle. This figure also shows the relationship between the peak. If the conversion is from displacement to velocity or acceleration.637 X Pk Note: The conversions above are true only for sine waves. = 0. To convert units from acceleration to velocity or displacement requires that the data be integrated when it is processed.0 X A (Peak-to-Peak) RMS = 0. displacement. and average values. or velocity. then these are actually calculated from the RMS value using the following equations: Pk = 0 to A (Peak) P-P = 2. RMS. 6. notice that the time it takes for one cycle to complete is designated by "T". . RMS. One of the great advantages of available software packages is that you can convert from one display unit to another. then the data must go through a differentiation process. or average values. Typically. you can collect your data in units of acceleration and later display it units of acceleration. In the figure of the waveform above. The relationship between acceleration.4. peak-topeak. and displacement measurements are depicted in the following figure. 5.414 X RMS Avg. the overall value of the measurement is an RMS value.707 X Pk (Root Mean Square) Pk = 1. If you have selected peak. The amplitude levels may also be expressed as peak. velocity. peak-to-peak. or average. peak-to-peak. For example.

the amplitude at each frequency. These areas are Subsynchronous. This overlay allows you to quickly determine if any of these expected faults are suspect. the time waveform still holds some very vital information that is helpful in the diagnostic process. Subsynchronous references the area of the spectrum below the turning speed of the machine. Units of frequency may also be displayed in one of three ways as the amplitude may be. This averaging mode requires the use of a phototach or strobe light for the once per revolution signal. Spectral plots may be divided into three areas of interest. Order tracking is used when the speed of a machine continuously fluctuates. Orders are always referencing the turning speed at the measurement point the data was collected. or frequency spectrum. Fault frequency sets are not required. This mode will hold the highest amplitude levels attained at each spectral cell in the frequency domain. then another mathematical process is performed. and Nonsynchronous. another component on the machine. Peak Hold is really not an averaging technique. cycles per minute (CPM). When utilizing these fault frequencies. Consideration is also given to the type of averaging mode to be utilized during the data collection process. Negative Linear averaging provides a means of spectral subtraction to remove noise from one machinery configuration to another. Normal averaging is used for routine data collection. or another machine. By dividing the frequency domain into these three different areas. an overlay is displayed over the spectral plot. Synchronous. cage frequency of a Roller Element Bearing. The frequency spectrum will display the frequency at which an event is occurring. the analysis process is somewhat simplified. Some of these causes are rolling element bearings. although it is considered an averaging mode. However. When diagnosing a machine. This will convert your time waveform to an FFT display. Some of the faults that may be found in this area are oil whirl.The shaded area on the figure above indicates normal operating speed range for industrial machines. Order . and depending upon the resolution it can separate closely spaced frequencies. These Fault Frequencies are defined based on the expected faults for a particular machine. Synchronous components are those that are phase locked with the rotation of the shaft. and indications of rubs. Synchronous Time averaging will attenuate the amplitude levels of all frequencies that are not synchronous to the turning of the reference shaft. Once the time waveform has been collected. and that is called an FFT (Fast Fourier Transform). you are simply displaying the data as a multiple of turning speed. belt frequency. Many different frequencies will be synchronous and fall in this area of interest. When displaying in orders. Certain defects will have distinct patterns in the waveform that may help confirm your diagnosis of a particular fault. Another means of simplification that CSI uses is the Fault Frequency sets. The last averaging mode to discuss is Order Tracking. a frequency spectrum is much easier to use than a time waveform. These three units are hertz (CPS). but are a very useful tool for you the analyst. or Orders. Nonsynchronous components are those that are not an exact integer multiple of turning speed.

Phase is simply a time relationship between two events. This method is only limited by the maximum frequency of the analyzer. The options are the same for the overall calculation and the integration methods: Analog and Digital. and the resulting frequency domain display is in the units you selected. the overall value is calculated from the waveform and uses all frequencies from 0 . bearing misalignment. Phase is one of the most important vibration analysis tools an analyst can have at his/her disposal . When using the digital integration method. The illustration shown above provides some insight for understanding phase and the meaning that it has in industry with respect to machinery diagnostics. Basically. Phase Data Another diagnostic tool that provides you with vital information is phase data. However. This may be generated with a strobe light. this relationship is between the peak amplitude of the vibration signal and the firing of the phototach. The signal label DX is the vibration signal representing an unbalanced rotor condition (1xRPM). The window that is used during data collection is also very important. The time difference is then used to calculate the phase angle. infrared or photo tach pulse. Overall calculations and integration methods may also be changed in the analyzer. the data would be smeared and the peaks would have broad skirts on them. Without order tracking. The Hanning window is used with routine data collection that will be performed in an RBM program. soft foot. the data is integrated in the frequency domain instead of the time domain. looseness. This mode also requires a tach input for the once per revolution signal. The analyst uses phase when trying to balance an unbalanced rotor to locate the heavy spot. In the 2115 analyzer you only have two options. Integration methods are very similar to the overall calculation. the Uniform window is utilized during transient type events when the beginning and ending data will be the same. the waveform is also displayed in the same units. In single channel vibration analysis. When using analog. The signal labeled "T" is a tachometer reference pulse. Let's discuss the overall calculation first. misalignment. The FFT is performed first. When using analog. Hanning and Uniform.30kHz.tracking is capable of tracking a change in speed up to 6% between averages. Phase is also a useful tool to determine types of unbalance. resonance and other machinery faults. leaving the waveform in the units of the transducer. the FFT is integrated into the units of choice. the data is integrated in the time domain. . an FFT is performed. The digital method is performed in the frequency domain and will be limited by the maximum frequency selected for the spectral display.

it will help alleviate some of the guess work when trying to analyze the data. Also a soft foot would show a phase difference from the other machine feet. other machine faults such as misalignment and soft foot can show up at 1xRPM similar to unbalance.Phase reading with looseness will be erratic from point to point around the machine train. Therefore. and impellers will generate a Vane Pass frequency. Misalignment . In other words. a 90° (±20°) phase shift from vertical to horizontal at the same bearing location. This relationship is based on the differential time between the two signals. . A 90° phase shift will be present right at the resonant frequency. understanding the phase relationships of unbalance. Parallel misalignment will tend to show a 180°( ±30°) phase shift across the coupling in a radial direction. Dynamic unbalance shows a phase shift across the rotor radial to radial or horizontal to horizontal that is related to the heavy spots on each end of the rotor. Unbalance . By utilizing this predictability. A soft or loose mounting foot usually shows a phase shift from the foot itself to the foundation.Static unbalance will show a zero degree phase shift across the rotor radial to radial or horizontal to horizontal.Angular misalignment will typically show a 180° ( ±30°) phase shift across the coupling in the axial direction. This time is calculated from the start of the tachometer pulse (the reference signal) and the time required to see the unbalanced (the comparison signal) condition following the reference pulse. By knowing this information. the ability to determine the relationship between the two signals becomes much easier based on the following calculation.The phase shifts 180° from the frequencies below resonance to the frequencies above resonance. number of teeth on each gear. The difference is considered the Dt. However. you can set up fault frequency sets and very quickly pull up the overlays when analyzing the data. then the phase measurements will also be 180° out of phase. Phase measurements are very important when diagnosing and correcting machine unbalance. Looseness and Soft Foot . With the ability to draw this relationship in time. number of impeller vanes. what type of bearings are used (sleeve or anti-friction). misalignment and looseness and other machine faults can provide further assistance in the prevention of an improper fault diagnosis. Composition of Machinery It is very important that you know the composition of each machine as much as possible. the analysts' proficiency in analyzing specific machinery faults becomes enhanced. The following machinery faults are the most common conditions that may be differentiated with the aid of phase. gears will generate a Gearmesh frequency. Each component will typically generate certain frequencies that you can predict. Bearing misalignment (cocked bearing) will show a 180°(±30°) hase shift from one side of the bearing to the other or from the top of the bearing to the bottom. If the heavy spots are 180° out of phase on each end.Phase as stated earlier is the relationship between two signals. With this time. Resonance . etc. Bearings will generate certain defect frequencies. Often this shift will be greater than 90°.

4. you will have a gradual increase in the 1xTS amplitude. The more work you do up front when preparing your database. The same thing would happen if a part broke during normal operations. With these characteristics now defined. Let's stop for a moment and consider some of the causes of imbalance. I would recommend cleaning the component first. how do you know if it is an indication of looseness or vane pass frequency? As you can see. the imbalance amplitude will follow the speed of the machine. if any. There is too much left to guess work. This preparation time may be intensive. Another quick check is to change the speed of the machine if possible. Imbalance Imbalance is perhaps one of the more basic faults that is detected with vibration analysis. they will be low in amplitude relative to the 1xTS peak. What about situations in which there is material buildup on a component. you can see that an imbalance fault is indeed a basic fault. if there is a spectral peak at 5xTS. periodic. then the imbalance amplitude will increase. There will be very little. If harmonics exist. The above multi-point plot shows the data collected on the T.D. suddenly or gradually. The time waveform will be sinusoidal with peaks at 1xTS. The time waveform will be simple. For example. With these two causes of imbalance you would see a sudden increase in the 1xTS amplitude. If a machine has been broken down for repair and then re-assembled. If you suspect imbalance is a problem with your machine. then take a look at a trend plot of the 1xTS band and see how the amplitude has changed over time. This single spectrum and waveform will show the sinusoidal waveform and the lack of harmonics. 3. and non-impacting. Often this will alleviate the cause of the imbalance and a balance job is not necessary. its like looking for a needle in a haystack. Due to the increase in the centrifugal force.A. Exhaust Fan. such as a fan? In cases such as material buildup and normal wear of components. This will give a better idea of what to look for once you inspect the machine. The following figure will show the data from the B2V measurement point. If you balance the machine because of material buildup. . Notice that the vertical measurements showed a very significant peak at 1xTS. If the speed is increased. axial vibration. Imbalance is often times diagnosed as a problem when it is actually another fault.If this internal component information is unknown. the better you will be prepared for analyzing the data. 2. without the correct information. The distinguishing characteristics are: 1. but it pays off in the long run. it is difficult to accurately diagnose your data. then you should suspect another fault other than imbalance. In most imbalance cases. imbalance could occur if the machine is not assembled correctly or there are parts missing. Take a look at the case history below. then later the material may fall off and now you are out of balance again. If there are several harmonics of turning speed and the amplitudes are significant relative to the turning speed peak.

we show a multi-point plot very similar to the first.The time waveform. . This fan was balanced and the vibration levels fell substantially.05 in/sec. shows the sinusoidal pattern as well as the higher frequency activity. In the next figure. By insignificant we mean that the axial vibration is less than half the amplitude of the radial vibration. even though it is displayed in acceleration. In the figure below. but with data after the maintenance has been completed. You can still discern the sine wave even though the acceleration units will diminish the low frequencies to some extent.4 in/sec to . but it is insignificant when compared to the radial vibrations. the single spectrum that is displayed shows that there is some level of vibration in the axial direction. Note the spectral plot span has changed from .

Misalignment can basically be categorized into three areas: angular. . The time waveform is repeatable and periodic with one or two clear peaks per revolution. As you might expect. Over the years there have been several methods used to "correctly" align equipment. you can see that a substantial 2xTS peak does exist. Let's take a look at the vertical reading in a single spectrum and at the waveform. 4. Angular misalignment shows a high axial measurement at 1xTS. High axial levels. Below is a case history for misalignment. flashlight and ruler.Misalignment Misalignment is another very common fault found in industry. offset. This data was collected on a lineshaft turbine. 3. reverse dial indicators and the latest technology of laser alignment. There are arguments to support which is "better" for different applications. This peak could possibly be indicative of a coupling problem or simply related to the looseness. High vibration at 1xTS or 2xTS in the spectrum. The combination of offset and angular is the most prevalent in the field. Each type of misalignment will have specific characteristics to that type. In the multi-point plot above. The looseness may also be representative of the wear on the sleeve bearings utilized by the turbine. Offset misalignment shows a high 2xTS measurement radially. but that is not the focus of this paper. There are several multiples of turning speed indicating a possible looseness problem. Notice the dominant 3xTS peak in the horizontal direction. A significant phase shift (approximately 180 degrees) in the axial or radial direction across the coupling. high axial and radial measurements. the combination misalignment has both the above mentioned characteristics. The turbine was misaligned with the gearbox. This looseness may be driven by the misalignment. The characteristics of misalignment as they manifest themselves in a frequency spectrum are as follows: 1. and combination. 2. Those methods include the string and straight-edge.

Each bearing is also designed for a particular application. There may be a presence of broad band energy mounds. . This technology falls more into the category of Proactive Maintenance. it will fail prematurely. The FRQCAL program in MasterTrend can be used to look up the bearing of interest and then display these calculated values. When these frequencies are present. Looking at the amplitude of the waveform. These are not all inclusive but does give us some idea that there are several reasons why the bearings fail. 4. it was mentioned that broadband energy may be present. bearings will emit certain calculable defect frequencies. Each bearing is designed to last for a certain amount of time. It will be expanded over a wide range of frequencies. Inner Race BPFO . In the early stages of the defect. The vertical lines indicate each revolution of the shaft. you can conclude that there is very little impacting occurring in this machine. You can also create a fault frequency set using this bearing information. Load has a cubed effect on the bearing life and the speed has a direct correlation.Ball Pass Freq. There will be a presence of impacting in the time waveform. The environment in which the bearing will be operating plays a very important role in the life expectancy of the bearing. as well as the 2xTS peak. You can perform post-analysis on bearings and determine the cause of the failure. In order to maximize the life that one can get from a bearing the load and speed may be adjusted. This is very helpful when analyzing data. Specifications for the pitch diameter. improper installation. Using this.Ball Pass Freq. 3. you could determine why it failed and eliminate the reason instead of continually replacing a by-product of the real fault. 2. especially in the later stages.The single plot does show the harmonics of turning speed. contact angle. There is no data available after the maintenance was performed. Bearings Bearings are a major concern to most personnel involved in maintenance. Notice the amplitude of the second harmonic. ball diameter. If a bearing is used for the wrong application. In general. there is a defect in the bearing. Outer Race These frequencies are calculated based on the geometrical design of the bearing. the amplitudes will be low.Ball Spin Freq. The bearings must be installed correctly and lubricated at the correct intervals. BSF . Some of the characteristics that you may see for a bearing defect are: 1. What is broadband energy? Broadband energy occurs when there is much impacting in the waveform. BPFI . As mentioned earlier. improper lubrication (over or under). unless the bearing is associated with a gearbox which will have high levels of impacting due to the meshing of gears. and the correct lubricant must be used. Nonsynchronous peaks and harmonics of these peaks. and utilizing a bearing housing as a ground for welding. there may also be sidebands of 1xTS around these peaks. the bearing may last until the maintenance can be planned. By aligning this machine the problem would go away. Some of these reasons are: pre-existing flaw from manufacturing. The different frequencies that may be calculated are: FTF . This is an indication of late stages of failure. hence the name broadband. excessive external vibration. but if the maintenance is not performed they will fail prematurely. Also. Any impacting greater than 2 g's total swing is cause for concern. In the characteristics of a bearing failure.Fundamental Train Freq. and the number of balls or rollers are used for these calculations. This impacting is exciting all the frequencies in the bearing causing the amplitudes to increase. the waveform shows two distinct peaks per revolution of the shaft. This is typically done when a defect has been diagnosed and a planned outage is very near. there are several reasons why a bearing might fail. It may also be referred to as a raised noise floor. By changing the load or speed.

07 in/sec is the highest peak of all the spectra shown. On the other hand. The data came from a primary washer used in the process. Notice that the amplitudes are very low. This particular defect is on the outer race. The amplitudes of an outer race defect will be dependent upon where the defect is physically located. which may last for a long time before complete failure. the amplitudes will be higher and the rate of progression will be faster.33 orders (10. This frequency is the primary BPFO defect frequency for this bearing.The following case history is from a paper mill that manufactures tissue paper. then the amplitudes will be lower and the rate of progression will be slower. The next figure will show the data after the bearing has been replaced. as did this one. . The above figure shows the single spectral plot and waveform for the data collected on 8 July 1993. or even longer before replacement is required.33xTS). if the defect is not in the load zone. Notice that there are several nonsynchronous peaks in all of the spectra except the last. Often times the other vibrations will be of such magnitude that the lower amplitude of the primary bearing defect frequency may not be manifested in the spectrum. . A bearing that has an outer race defect out of the load zone may last for months. If the defect is in the load zone. The amplitudes did not vary that much. Usually this primary defect frequency may not be as discernible as it is in some of these plots. The first plot is a multi-spectra plot of the same measurement point showing the progression of the defect over time. but the defect did warrant replacement of the bearing. It is very easy to see that there are 15 harmonics of the frequency at 10. Notice also that there is about 2-3 g's total swing in the waveform for this bearing.

The levels are less than . base mount b). rotating element looseness a). split casings c). structural looseness a). horizontal and vertical amplitudes may differ greatly 3.Note the amplitude levels after the bearing has been replaced. These sidebands are a result of a true modulation taking place in the machine or as a result of beat frequencies. This characteristic is what distinguishes looseness from other faults such as misalignment. bearing caps d). The term "sidebands" has been used during this discussion on bearing defects. but other "tricks" may be used also. phase data is very useful in determining a looseness condition and its location. bearings supports 2. fans c). Random. impellers b). Presence of a large number of harmonics of turning speed 2. couplings Characteristics of looseness: 1. Often directional in nature.01 in/sec. Mechanical Looseness Looseness falls into one of two categories. What are sidebands? Sidebands are frequencies that are displayed around another center frequency. One such method is the use of a strobelight. bearings d). 1. non-periodic time waveform With mechanical looseness the waveform is very distinct in that it is random and has no repeating pattern. Occasional occurrence of half-harmonics 4. . As mentioned earlier.

The spectrum above from MOH shows a 1XTS peak with a hump of energy from 3XTS to 5XTS.A mechanical looseness case history follows.1275 ZIPS. erratic time waveform below lacks a repeatable pattern even though small impacts are visible. The overall amplitude remains relatively low at 0. peaks from 1XTS to 6XTS indicate looseness. The plot above provides an expanded view of the preceding page. and harmonics exist to 10XTS. Motor Inboard Vertical (MIV) appears to have the most energy. . This comparison enables you to predict the type of looseness present on the machine. The non-periodic. Note the relative amplitudes of the five measurement points. Motor Inboard Vertical (MIV) clearly shows the highest peaks. In the example above. This waveform pattern indicates looseness.

Unlike other defect frequencies. GMF = (# teeth) X (TS) For example. Sidebands a). Its amplitude will change with the amount of load on the gears. Just remember to keep it simple and not make a mountain out of a mole hill. The basic thing to keep in mind is the calculation for gearmesh. Gearmesh frequency a). GMF (Hz) = 256 X 60 Hz = 15. High level sidebands indicate problem b). you may need to calculate additional parameters to identify which gear(s) show(s) defects. 1. When you analyze a multiple gear train. Gear natural resonance excited by gear defects b). 600 RPM You usually calculate GMF in Hz.Gears Gearboxes may appear to be very complex when you first sit down to analyze one. Here are a few of the concepts that need to be remembered when dealing with gears.360 Hz GMF (RPM) = 256 X 3600 RPM = 921. Good indicator of a problem . gearmesh is always present in the spectrum. Gear natural frequency a). Sidebands indicate which gear is bad by the spacing between peaks 3. Gearmesh is a simple calculation that is the product of the rotational speed of the gear and the number of teeth on the gear. Appears regardless of gear condition b). Amplitude changes significantly with load 2. a 256-tooth gear runs at 3600 RPM or 60 Hz.

Depending upon the resolution and the maximum frequency used when collecting data. Sidebands provide the key to gearbox analysis. you may not be able to differentiate the two peaks. Belts A unique characteristic about belt defects is that the primary belt frequency is below the turning speed of the components of the machine. such as a crack in the belt. Sidebands modulated by the speed of the input shaft appear on the spectrum above. . The spectrum above shows sidebands of the gearmesh frequency modulated by 1XTS of the output shaft. this two times belt frequency peak will be very near the turning speed of one of the components on the machine. it might prove more difficult to determine which shaft has the defect. Typically. The input shaft is the most likely culprit because of the higher amplitude of its sidebands. This means that if there is a belt defect. then it will strike both sheaves and cause the two times belt frequency peak to be more dominant. Another rather unique characteristic is that there are generally two sheaves in a belt driven configuration.The gearmesh frequency appears at 14XTS of the pinion. The belt primary frequency falls in the subsynchronous area of the spectral display. Because sidebands of the output shaft are also present. Note that this peak clearly dominates all three spectra shown above.

Note that in this case. This will help in analyzing eccentricity of the sheaves. The spectrum may show a peak at the primary belt frequency. A helpful hint is to collect one of the radial readings in line with the belt. the amplitude of the 2 X belt frequency peak is higher. A peak caused by the turning speed of the fan appears at 113 Hz. The spectrum above comes from a permanently mounted transducer located on the fan housing. because the defect on the belt hits both sheaves during each belt revolution. The vibration caused by the defective belt clearly adds a lot of energy into the system. Again. . The equation below is used to estimate the amount of time needed to collect the data. You could have offset or angular misalignment. Turning speed means the speed at which the belt actually moves around the two sheaves.This equation is used to determine the resolution of each spectral cell.5 Hz. Another common problem with belts is the alignment of the two sheaves. The turning speed of the belt calculated at roughly 24. The 2 X belt frequency shows a peak amplitude similar to the peak caused by the unbalance of the fan. The peak caused by the turning speed of the motor appears at 59. a high axial reading would be a good indicator of this problem. The plot shows a very high 2 X belt frequency.2 Hz. much like the misalignment of two shafts. This time does not include autoranging. The spectrum above comes from the vertical direction on the drive motor. Removing the belt problem would eliminate almost half of the energy going into the system.

open or shorted windings that appear at 2XLF and which increase in vibration as motor temperature climbs 3. rotor slot frequency = # of rotor slots X rotor freq. broken or open rotor bar that shows predominant vibration at shaft turning speed with sidebands spaced at a frequency equal to the number of poles on the motor multiplied by its slip frequency 2. looseness. however. Sources of rotor vibration include: 1. so vibration transducers can detect many of these defects. unbalanced phase that appears at 2XLF When you suspect an electrical problem. eccentric rotor that appears at 1XTS with sidebands spaced at slip frequency and/or 1XLF or 2XLF Note: slip frequency = magnetic field freq. Electrical Faults Electric motors can experience many of the mechanical problems presented elsewhere in this manual such as unbalance. therefore. . eccentricity. You can measure electrical defects with several different transducers. This type of pattern commonly occurs on belt driven equipment. The various electrical defects also present distinguishing characteristics. Unequal electromagnetic forces act on the rotor or stator to cause vibration. (If using the CSI Model 2110/21 15 Machinery Analyzer. loose iron or slot that shows predominant vibration at 2 X electrical line frequency (2XLF) and rotor bar pass frequency (the latter frequency has sidebands spaced at 2XLF) 3. Sources of stator vibration include: 1. The large cycle represents the difference in frequency between the turning speed peak on the motor and the 2 X belt frequency peak.rotor freq. Purely electrical problems. Each mechanical problem exhibits the characteristics covered in the section that specifically deals with that defect. looks at the vibration characteristics of defects in electric motors. loose stator laminations that appear at 2XLF and which may also show harmonics of 2XLF 2.) If the signal . insulation breakdown that shows up at 2XLF 4. This section. occur because of the electromagnetic fields associated with electric motors. check the vibration on the motor the instant after you turn off the electric power. and bearing defects. Vibration transducers easily detect such mechanical problems. use Monitor Waveform. but this section does not review the use of that probe. misalignment.The time waveform from the motor position shows a modulated pattern of vibration. CSI also offers the Model 341 Current Probe for use in further diagnostics.

Oil whirl peaks appear prominently at 0. the shaft rides up the side of the bearing on the oil film wedge. Journal Bearings Excessive clearance. The oil whirl frequency will fluctuate over time and if normal averaging is used. 2XTS. just as in the following case. the shaft can become eccentric within the bearing because of improper bearing design. Of course.4XTS peak also appears on the generator positions-GIH and GOH. and lobed bearing. but it should remain low and steady in amplitude. Some peak should normally show up at about 0. or excessive bearing wear. usually remains very small when compared to normal forces in the machine. and improper lubrication can each result in high vibration levels in journal bearings. Axial readings are best for thrust bearings . . you have an electrical defect. tilted pad bearing. The highest vibration levels appear at 1XTS on the inboard bearing positions of the turbine--TIH and TIV. The peak hold averaging mode is very beneficial when dealing with oil whirl in a journal bearing. The 0.4XTS. Bearing wear can also make the machine more susceptible to oil whip.drops instantly. Because of friction. Several types of sleeve bearing designs minimize the effect of oil whip. oil viscosity. you can detect oil whip at less than one-half the shaft speed. such as a slight unbalance or misalignment. These bearings have surfaces that form multiple oil film wedges in an attempt to center the shaft within the bearing. the oil film speed approximates only 42% to 47% of the shaft speed. These bearings include the axial grooved bearing. then the indications will be a significant peak at two times line frequency with sidebands spaced at 1/3 line frequency. If you perfectly center a shaft in a bearing. Look for sleeve bearing wear at 1XTS. improper bearing load. Oil whip or whirl occurs when the oil film in pressure-lubricated. or the oil injection point. Watch for steadiness by watching a live time spectral display. improper loading. oil pressure.4XTS on the turbine outboard bearing positions--TOH and TOV. This is a serious problem and should be corrected promptly. The oil film force. During spectral analysis. sleeve-type bearings exerts a force that pushes the shaft around within the bearing. then it gets averaged over this period and may not appear to be of any serious concern. Under normal operating conditions. Compare both vertical and horizontal readings. Note that 1XTS peaks normally have the highest amplitudes. or higher multiples. A journal bearing with excessive clearance allows a small excitation force. 3XTS. to cause significant vibration in the bearings. if the highest amplitude is maintained and compared to the amplitude of the turning speed. Radial readings usually provide the best information on plain bearings. you may find that the oil whirl is significant. If a three phase motor is single phasing. or even higher harmonics. because the shaft rides farther away from the bearing center. the machine will not become susceptible to oil whip. Tilted pad bearings usually show wear at the frequency equal to the number of pads multiplied by the shaft speed. The oil film force can then become the dominant force within the machine. You can often correct oil whip either by properly loading the bearing or by changing one or more of the following: bearing design. The predominant frequency of the vibration can occur at 1XTS. Collect data in the radial and axial directions. 2XTS. however. depending on bearing design and application. The vertical reading usually gives the best indication of excessive clearances in a journal bearing. Changes in either lube oil pressure or viscosity likewise increase susceptibility to oil whip. Note that electrical problems appear in the radial direction except on motors away from their magnetic centers. However.

Every two to three revolutions of the shaft. . The height of the oil whirl peak causes concern. but the true peak-to-peak value of the time waveform appears to exceed 0. When viewed in live time.4XTS peaks that exceed 1XTS peaks indicate a significant problem. This method reveals that the amplitude for the oil whirl peaks surpassed that for the 1XTS peaks. The vertical lines denote the time required for each revolution of the shaft to occur. It basically shows a non-repeating pattern. Peak-hold averaging keeps the highest value measured among all the averages for each line of resolution. a peak caused by the whipping motion of the oil becomes visible. and at other times it almost disappears.4613 mils peak-to-peak. The spectrum above shows data for the turbine outboard horizontal point--TOH. It sometimes appears much higher than 1XTS. The RMS value of the time waveform is 0. The first and third (from the bottom) come from the regular route mode. The second and top spectra come from the use of peakhold averaging. because its amplitude matches that of the 1XTS peak. this oil whirl peak appears very erratic in amplitude.The spectra above show the effects of peak-hold averaging on the outboard turbine points. The plot above shows the time waveform for the turbine outboard horizontal point--TOH. An erratic amplitude characterizes an oil instability problem. Even though the amplitude at both frequencies are relatively low. but 0.7 mils. The data comes from routine route data collected with normal averaging.

Likewise.30). This is a powerful tool since operations do not always want to shut down the machines. One has already been mentioned. the phase data will change by approximately 180 degrees (+/. vibration that occurs at this frequency becomes amplified. but only the resonant frequency will continue to ring. The impact excites all the frequencies. a machine "rings" at its resonant frequency when a force such as misalignment or unbalance occurs. fans. compressors. By changing the averaging mode. and that is an impact test. you monitor the peak and phase for the increase in amplitude and phase shift. an impact test to determine a machine's resonant frequency is also sometimes called a "ring test". This will indicate where the resonant frequency is located. Changing any one of these three factors modifies the machine's resonant frequency. we are just fine tuning the equipment. You will be left with the impact data only. and damping combine to determine a machine's resonant frequency. Therefore. however. Increasing the stiffness will increase the resonant frequency. At this point in time. pumps. You can often observe higher levels of vibration at a machine's resonant frequency than at other frequencies. mass. Much of the technology that we use today has been around for some time. This technology can be applied to electric motors. insuring that the machine is impacted once per average. but as you gain valuable experience it will all become more logical. The impact test is performed in the same manner. The output of this data would indicate by the increased amplitudes where the resonant frequencies are. Stiffness. When you strike a bell or a tuning fork. Therefore. Less damping occurs at the resonant frequency than at other frequencies. Changing the damping has no effect on the resonant frequency itself. but it does change the amplification factor. you can perform an impact test while the machine is still running. When excited by an external force. turbines. Once the set number of averages has been collected. chillers. all of this may seem like magic. it rings at its resonant frequency. By increasing the mass of an object. Another characteristic is that the amplitude levels will increase due to the amplification factor of the resonant frequency. In turn. These vibration levels. you would impact the machine while collecting your vibration data. the mechanical structure tends to vibrate at its resonant frequency. Conclusion The maintenance philosophies utilized today have evolved over time. the resonant frequency is decreased. While the machine is not running. Some rather simple field tests may be performed to determine the resonant frequency of a machine. then stop impacting the machine and subtract the operating data from the other. this alteration may help solve a resonance problem on the machine.Resonance Every mechanical structure has at least one characteristic frequency (and sometimes more than one) which is called its critical or resonant frequency. You could also capture transit data or cascade data. Good luck! . While doing this. Vibration analysis is primarily limited by our imagination. etc. Another test is to perform a coast down or startup on the machine. decrease over a machine's operating lifetime. When passing through the resonant frequency of a machine.

.Appendix A Rathbone Chart The chart above was made based upon casing measurements taken on heavy. slow speed machines.

In the above figure. As was mentioned in the text of the article. much like the trend above.Appendix B Overall versus Selective Bands About a decade and a half ago. Is it? . this has been proven to be inaccurate. This overall reading was a single number used to try and determine the condition of the machinery. the overall level trend shows that this machine passes all the preset alarm levels and should be in good condition. the vibration equipment that was available supplied only an overall reading. The overall level is still utilized in the analysis process as an indication of the amount of energy contained in the system.

you can see that there has been a drastic increase in activity since the previous reading. This alone should be proof enough that the overall value by itself is not very accurate in determining the condition of the machinery. Note the high 1xTS peaks in all the spectra. you can see the collected data for the last four collection periods. Looking at the last set of data collected in October of 1989.In this figure. . This PDM program is monthlybased. The level at 1xTS was higher in the first reading and dropped in amplitude over the next three sets of data.

and as the bearings wear and relieve the misalignment the 1xTS peak diminishes. the bearing bands are being displayed. In the above trend plots. Here. The level of energy has drastically increased since the last months data was collected. Here you can see that there has been some significant changes take place. This peak is a result of misalignment. You can see that the alarm levels displayed above and those on the previous trend plot are different. The data shown in the figure above reflects the selective band for the Subharmonic & 1xTS band.Having the ability to divide the overall value into selected frequency bands for more discrete alarming and analysis provides a very powerful tool for vibration analysis. note that the levels of vibration have triggered alarms. the 1xTS peak has decreased in amplitude over the four months of data collection. . Each individual band has its own alarm limits established. In both plots.

Should be calibrated each time for the target material. . 6. 7. All of these characteristics point to a possible bearing defect (which it was) yet the overall trend shows that everything should be okay. Requires an outside power supply. 3. Double differentiation to cross all vibration parameters. 8. Reads displacement. You be the judge! Appendix C Transducer Advantages and Disadvantages Displacement Transducers Advantages: 1. Research and development is ongoing. Small and lightweight. Measures relative motion. Operates over a wide frequency range. 6. 5. 4. There is significant energy at the higher frequencies. Disadvantages: 1. 5. Dynamic signal rides on DC voltage. Several of the peaks have 1xTS sidebands and the peaks are nonsynchronous. 2. Output affected by magnetic spots. 7. Measures static displacement. 4.The actual single spectrum from October 1989 is displayed above. 9. 2. Inexpensive. Output affected by material. Limited at high frequency. Reads displacement. 3. Requires a stable datum plane.

4. 2. High frequencies can swamp element. Wide frequency range. Relatively expensive. No research to improve design. Self-generating. 7. 2. Large and heavy. 3. 4. Accelerometers Advantages: 1. High input impedance to charge amplifier. Output varies with measurement position. Disadvantages: 1. Excellent signal-to-noise ratio. 3. Relatively inexpensive. 6. 4. 4. 3. Disadvantages: 1. 5. Limited signal-to-noise ratio. 5. 6. Some effect from magnetic fields. 5. Reads acceleration. Small.Velocity Transducers Advantages: 1. . Reads acceleration. Rugged. Light weight. Research to improve. 6. Limited temperature range. 3. Limited frequency range. Reads velocity. 2. 2. Requires outside power. Double integration required to cross all vibration parameters.

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