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Rolling element bearings are critical components in the majority of rotating machinery. If they fail there will be downtime, secondary damage, safety concerns, and probably overtime labor costs. In this presentation, Jason Tranter will provide a three-pronged approach to avoiding catastrophic failures through vibration monitoring, and reducing the incidence of new failures.

Learning Points

  1. Care: The presentation will begin with an overview of why bearings typically fail and what you can do to avoid the failures. Topics include: correct installation, lubrication, storage, transportation, and operation. You will learn why shaft alignment and balancing and other corrective measures can extend the life of the bearing.
  2. Monitor: Next the presentation will provide an introduction to vibration analysis and the nature of the vibration patterns generated by bearings. Two basic approaches to bearing health monitoring will be presented:
  3. Simple and inexpensive: Using hand-held meters and ultrasound, readings can be taken that provide an indication of lubrication and bearing condition. If done properly it is possible to get an indication of some of the root cause fault conditions: unbalance, misalignment, and resonance.
  • More sophisticated: Using portable (or on-line) vibration monitoring systems it is possible to get a very early warning of the fault conditions and gain a much clearer picture of overall equipment health.

4. Forensics: Just like the CSI TV program, we can open the failed bearings and learn why it failed. Armed with this information we can complete the cycle and ensure that we prevent the problem from occurring again.

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