End users know vibration can be one of the most devastating malfunctions to centrifugal pump systems. Vibration impacts reliability and process efficiencies if not investigated promptly. In fact, experts say vibration is an actual measure of the overall reliability of a pump. The damage caused by vibration can ultimately cause catastrophic failure.
Vibration is a symptom. Minimal vibration is expected, but excessive vibration can be disastrous. Operators must find the root cause to eliminate it. And, it can happen in more than one place in a system at a time so users must be diligent in the search for the root cause(s).
Top causes of vibration:
• Component issues (bearing failure, impeller imbalance/ bent shaft, hydraulic imbalanced impeller)
• Air Entrainment
• Misalignment (in the shaft, for instance)
• Pipe strain (installation issues)
Vibration analysis has changed in recent years because of the rapid increase in the number of technologies that gather data. This data can indicate the issues—and also predict future problems the system may face. More and more end users are incorporating the Internet of Things (IoT), allowing thorough vibration analysis to identify the cause(s) of vibration.
Sensors today are more sensitive than ever and can provide a measure of the severity of the vibration and the source. Sensors can measure modes and frequencies of the equipment. Computer models are becoming more prevalent as well. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) are used both before installation and after as a means of studying existing and predicted vibration.
As an industrial pump and service provider, R.F. MacDonald Co., has the opportunity to help end users find problem actors. Our predictive maintenance services can find vibration issues, repair them, and keep your equipment operating at optimal levels.