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Vol.

2, 2006

Condition Monitoring, F ault Diagnosis and Fault Predictive Maintenance of Mechanical Systems
B.C. Nakra
Professor, Mechanical and Automobile Engg. Deptt.

Condition monitoring of plants and machines has acquired considerable importance, as a useful tool for predictive or condition based maintenance. T echniques like vibration monitoring, acoustic emission monitoring, temperature monitoring, wear debris, corrosion and performance monitoring, are briefly discussed. Current work on development of expert systems and artificial neutral networks for diagnosis about the condition or health of a machine is also covered. Keywords: Condition monitoring, fault diagnosis, condition based maintenance, expert systems, artificial neural networks.

Maintenance Engineering and R elated Concepts Related
Maintenance is the management, control, execution and quality of those activities which will ensure that optimum levels of availability and overall performance of plant are achieved, in order to meet business objectives. Maintenance strategies may be classified as 1. Corrective or breakdown type 2. Preventive or time based type Maintenance costs being a major part of total operating costs of all manufacturing and production plants (between 5-40 % of costs of goods produced, depending on type of industry), considerable savings can result if proper attention is paid to maintenance procedures. Result surveys in USA [1] indicate that one third of all maintenance costs is wasted as a result of unnecessary or improperly carried out maintenance. In fact, the survey concluded that 60 billion dollars may be saved annually if the maintenance management is scientifically carried out. In U.K., a study [2] sponsored by their dept. of Trade & Industry, pointed out that the adoption of better maintenance practices, may result in an annual saving of £ 1.3 billion. In India, during the past five decades, with the emergence of power plants, steel plants, oil refineries and large factories often with foreign collaboration, experience has shown

an under-utilization of capacity due to inadequate infrastructure particularly maintenance. There appears to be considerable scope, to modernize our maintenance procedures and keep pace with the awareness and development taking place elsewhere. Many new concepts have emerged, related with maintenance engineering. These include • RAM • TPM • RCM • CBM • MMDP • COMADEM and others RAM implies Reliability, Availability and Maintainability of a system, often obtained from a detailed study of its sub-systems and their interrelation. TPM implies Total Productive Maintenance, as developed in Japan, which essentially is a combined approach of bridging the production and maintenance gap. In this, maintenance has to be the key ingredient of everybody’s drive to eliminate all potential production losses, through analysis and planning including use of latest technology. As in Fig. (1) the manufacturing strategy is related with both production planning and maintenance polices.

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as indicated by periodic /continuous measurement and analysis. CBM is useful as it is not possible to use any probability theory for failure prediction and it may be possible to have sufficient lead time between the failure and its detection. sometimes highly sophisticated and benefits have to be justified by economic factors. art and technology of detecting.Vol. wear debris analysis. accurately. diagnosis. effectively. temperature.Manufacturing Policy Inter-Relationship [2] RCM or Reliability Centered Maintenance is a related aspect. CBM or Condition Based Maintenance or predictive maintenance implies carrying out maintenance according to need as predicted by condition monitoring of the machine or the plant by suitably installed monitoring instruments or equipment. MMDP or Manufacturing. 2006 monitoring techniques. Monitoring. Fig. offshore etc. COMADEM (Condition Monitoring & Diagnostic Engineering Management) is the science. In predictive or condition based maintenance or CBM. measuring. 2 shows a typical bath-tub curve for a machine. corrosion. 2. swiftly. systematically. failure rate is constant and time schedule for maintenance can be followed. provide a useful guide to such 2 Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering . nuclear. is important. prognosis. These techniques include use of parameters like vibrations and noise. It is interesting to examine a maintenance strategy in relation to the failure rate curve. It may be seen that all the above concepts are related and imply use of condition monitoring or proper measurement and analysis of the health of a machine. 1: Maintenance . 2: A T ypical Failure Curve For a Machine Condition Monitoring T echniques Techniques Vibration Monitoring and Analysis Vibration levels on machine frames and bearing housings and relative movements between shaft journals and bearings. Also. controlling and managing any change in a part of the machine or plant systems. reliably. maintenance is only carried out when there is need. involving a structured evaluation of failure consequences which integrates decisions regarding safety. In the normal operation range. operating economics and maintenance costs. Diagnostic or Prognostics involves use of sensors. safely & economically. though for applications like space. pressure flow and other performance parameters. using some of the several available condition Fig. lubricant condition. not only for indicating maintenance needs but also for control of manufacturing operations and prediction of residual life of components being monitored. Fig. involve use of instruments. The advantages of such a maintenance strategy are: • Safety from damage • increased availability and output The techniques. Running-in failures are due to teething troubles at initial stages and may be eliminated by improved design. monitoring. proper training in interpretation of measured signatures or signals. however.

As crack is initiated or propagated through a material. misalignment. 7. 3: Vibration monitoring for diagnosis. Fig. 5: T ypical Fault Detection System Fig. In recent years. 5 shows a typical fault detection system using digital computer. The source of the wave or location of the crack can be found by using three or more transducers. coupled to alarm systems but also by periodic checks with hand held vibration monitoring devices. is acoustic emission. A number of instruments are available for measuring and analysing vibration signals from machinery. Fig. etc. 2006 faults as unbalance. A more sophisticated analyser is the Real Time Analyser or a Fast Fourier Transform Analyser (FFT) which gives an instantaneous picture of amplitude vs frequency. it is necessary to analyse the vibration signal by filters and spectrum analyser. The intrepretation of the recorded signals requires a specialised knowledge of the dynamic characteristics of the machine [3]. 2. It is not only the vibration amplitude which should be known but also the frequencies of vibrations which are important (Fig. 6: Spectrum of Vibratin and Sounde used for Monitoring and Diagnostics Fig. 4: Vibration Due to Defective Ball in Bearing Acoustic Emission A relatively new technique for detecting the initiation of cracks in machine structures. unbalance results in vibrations which have frequency equal to that of running speed while misalignment or looseness results in frequencies which are multiples of running speed. 6 shows the frequency ranges of vibration and other high frequency signals as related with defects. Table 1 shows a chart for fault diagnosis using vibration signatures. For frequency analysis.Vol. As an example. 3 Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering . The audible range for sound signals is till 20 KHz. 4 shows how the vibration levels of a ball bearing increase due to a defect. Fig. a stress pulse is generated and transmitted through the material as a stress wave. Fig. Acoustic emission signals are till 1 MHz. It is known that vibrations would be having special features under normal or abnormal conditions. A transducer mounted on the surface. 3). Fig. continuous vibration monitoring of process plants has become an accepted practice often by permanent electronic installations. will detect the disturbance and produce an electrical output as shown in Fig.

6. Ferrographic analysis and SOAP (Spectroscopic Oil Analysis Program). varies as the failure progresses. for plant monitoring and control [9]. The techniques used and the ranges of particle sizes. The parameters to be monitored are: corrosion rate. Table 2 gives the source of contaminants which result from theoperation of a typical reciprocating engine [7. can give indication about the health of the machine. may be used for monitoring corrosion. seal failure detection. Fig. 4 Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering . are also used for analysis. Corrosion Monitoring Systematic assessment of corrosion is useful for the efficient operation of a plant or equipment. Fig. These include MCD (Magnetic chip detectors). size and quality of the particles. is used to evaluate the degree of deterioration of an item of process plant. A threshold limit is set as shown in Fig. Several other parameters like rise time. This information along with data on physical construction of the component and thermodynamic state of equipment. within hours. detection of damage in rolling Fig. are also shown. 2006 Thermography is used to locate the increased surface temperature associated with corrosion damage in furnaces and stacks [6]. Useful warning of failure may be obtained by monitoring maximum bearing surface temperature. pistons. 7: Stress Wave Propagation in a Structure Wear Debris Analysis Wear debris is generated by wear processes at relatively moving surfaces of load carrying components like bearings. pressure vessels etc. 8]. shape. amount of metal remaining etc. Acoustic emission has been sucessfully used in a number of applications. Infrared thermography techniques are used to monitor both the temperatures and temperature pattern of equipment in operation. gears. heat exchangers. 8 so that a counter will register a count each time the signal level exceeds the threshold value. (9) shows how the size and quantity of the wear debris.testing of pressure vessels. which can be detected. cavitation detection. 8: Acoustic Emission Signal Frequencies of 200 kHz or more are encounterered as seen from Fig. 9: Variation of Particle Size & Amount with Failure Progression Temperature Monitoring Thermocouples and resistance thermometers are used for measuring bearing temperatures.Vol. Excessive bearing temperature is followed by failure. depth of corrosion. 2. event duration etc. seals. power generation industry. corrosion fatigue crack detection. radiography. Methods like visual inspection. detection of leaks. Study of the wear particles viz. Fig. cams and tappets. ultrasonic and electrical resistance method. These are applied in petroleum. chemical.

Sytems where a number of sensors are embedded in the machine and signature analysis is carried out as above. Fig. If a number of types of signatures like vibration.N. 11: Monitoring Equipment for a Large Motor In general. [7. the machine is called a ‘Smart Machine’. cylinder surface temperature. Fig. • Inference engine. Fig. 2006 Performance Monitoring Most of the present day techniques involve use of computer for storage of periodic or continuous data about the performance of a system being monitored. vibration monitoring is common and for machines with complex dynamic response like reciprocating engines. (11) shows a large electric motor whose parameters like stator voltage. winding temperature. like an expert would. The advances in some of the intelligent techniques like expert systems and artificial neural networks (A. There are three main components: • Knowledge base consisting a set of rules of the IF…. can diagnose an impending fault in a machine or plant through trend monitoring. wear debris analysis of lubricants is widely accepted. It is possible to diagnose faults in compressor. giving reasoning. The inference engine uses the knowledge base to process the information in the data base. combustor and turbine and whether any maintenance is required. current. interrogating the real time operators e. the reasoning has to be systematic based on experience and theoretical knowledge of the system.) are taking place with success and a number of software have been developed based on the above techniques [10-12]. ring clearance.N. performance etc. The management software interfaces with the operator. 10: Gas Turbine Condition Monitoring Fig. alarm / shut downs is possible automatically in order to avoid serious operational problems and failure. diagnosis and condition based maintenance. are monitored. In case of abnormal signatures. • Data base involving acquisition of data from sensors. in addition to measuring bearing vibrations and temperature. The diagnosis of faults is possible by monitoring and analyzing data about bearing vibrations and process parameters like temperature.g. For rotating machines. are monitored. (10) shows a gas turbine driving a propane gas compressor in a plant. Fig. 2. Diagnostic T echniques Techniques The analysis of various signatures as monitored periodically or continuously. vibration and oil debris analysis are powerful condition monitoring techniques for fault Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering 5 . the analysis has been considerably facilitated. pressure and flow rate at various locations as shown. 8. 12]. coolant temperature etc. With the use of computers. ensuring safety as wel.Vol. fuel injection pressure and a large number of functional parameters like power and fuel consumption rate. piston. Then types. 12 shows the main elements of an expert system in which a computer program is able to make decisions based on signature analysis. The data for an engine would be: cylinder pressures.

are used for training a network and then tested with vibration data to quantify the faults.Vol. a feed-forward multi-layer network with back propagation type algorithm is used [13-15].431 mm as parallel misalignment for the test data while the actual experimental value was 0.e. misalignment etc. is suitably chosen. the statistical moments of vibration signals are acquired in time domain for fault classification. These are based on human nervous systems. adjusting the weights so as to minimize the output error. 17]. It was seen that the ANN gave 0. The network is trained with available data and tested to verify the fault or damage in the system. and sensor is in axial direction. the work has been carried out using ANN method with vibration signatures in time domain. which was reasonably predicted. 2. 2006 IF: frequency is 1 X.Ns) are meant to recognize patterns in incomplete data.N. vertical and axial directions.45 mm. Fig. The values of vibration signals were obtained for quantified faults in the frequency domain. The Artificial Neural Networks (A. which are connected as in Fig. considering the first four harmonics of vibrations as in Table 3. the fault is : misalignment. It involves learning taking place with known outputs and inputs and the output error is fed back through the network. 13: A T ypical Artificial Neural Network 6 Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering . The trainind data was taken for 5 values of parallel misalignment and after training the test data was fed to the ANN. In [16. (i. Matlab toolbox of MATLAB was used with 3 layer network The network used 12 input neurons. . IF: frequency is 2 X. In order to reduce the number of inputs. Y is the output and Xi are the inputs. The vibrations were measured in horizontal. a threshold parameter W0 and a node activation functions. 'A' which introduces a non-linear transformation between input and output and at each neuron. with several neurons or nodes or more hidden layers between input and output neurons. same as the running speed) and sensor is in radial direction. 5 output neurons and 7 neurons in the hidden layer. The input-output relation for each node is determined by a set of connection weights Wi. It has been applied to rotating machines for various faults with training data obtained experimentally. for classification of faults. Results of vibration signatures due to faults like unbalance. Usually. the fault is: unbalance. (13).

Table 1: Vibration Chart Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering 7 . IEEE on Neural Networks. Chaudhry. 2001. Vol.T. G. I. 11.C. Hagan & M.E. London. Bor. Chapman & Hall. Vibration.Vol. Nakra. for fault identification in rotor bearing system. 1978. 1989. M.36. 2005. 14.K. Tata McGraw Hill.C. 1990.11.17. Araya & R. Instrumentation. Thaulow & Bergi. C. Van Nostrand Reinhold. 1984. 6. Detect incipient failure by monitoring acoustic emission. ibid. II Ed. Machinery Monitoring & Diagnostics Conf. K.A. 15. June 1990. NDT Intl. Mech. E. A guide to the condition monitoring of machinery. p108. 2. Vol.P . 13. 2. McCormik & A.. Dec. New York. Maintenance and Profitability.. Acoustic emission monitoring of corrosion fatigue crack growth in offshore steel. 16.211. 10. p439. London. The above strategy would lead to economical benefits and avoidance of unscheduled breakdowns and safety especially for large capacity high speed machines. 3. p989.K. Classification of rotating machine condition using artificial neural networks. P. 1989. Vol. New Delhi Publ. HMSO Publ. http://members. NDT Intl. P . B. p157. Nakra & K. R. IIT. Condition monitoring by thermography. Rothwell. Proc. 1982.S. A. CAD & forms management. An introduction to predictive maintenance. References 1. Measurement & Analysis. 1997. 2006 Concluding R emarks Remarks Condition monitoring based maintenance may be a component of a total maintenance system. Satish Kumar. Nandi. Proc. It is also to be a part of manufacturing system for machine and production control. Vol. The emerging area of intelligent diagnostics like expert systems and ANN are seen to be reasonably successful. p147. Measurement & Analysis.5. Las Vegas. p69. Willmott. An expert system generator with hypertext. Menhaj. B. Development of an expert system to diagnose machinery vibration problems. 12. Neale et. M. Neural Networks in thefield of condition monitoring. Instrumentation. Ph. N. 2002.J. R. Collacott. involving use of other maintenance strategies as well. 1973. NDT Intl. Gormaz. Gorley.S. 17. Mobley. Srinivasan. Piety & J. & D. 4. 1978. Yadava & L. Vol. 8. 7. N. 5.html. G.M. Thuestad. R...S.C. Trans. Corrosion monitoring. Training feedforward network with the Marquardt algorithm. I Int. Power. Artificial neural network design. al. Delhi.P .. Measurement & Analysis. D. K. Fault diagnosis of rotating machines using vibration monitoring. Mechanism and Machine Theory.B. Mechanical fault diagnosis.C. Maintenance Management. 1989. Vol. Nevada. Vyas. Smith. B.com/~malek/ index.. 1994. Thesis.tripod.11.K. 9.

2006 T able 2 Table 3: Frequency Components for RMS Vibration Velocities for Various Values of Parallel Misalignments ††† 8 Department of Mechanical & Automobile Engineering .Vol. 2.