Seeing Is Believing With Modern Condition Monitoring Tools

Seeing is believing with modern condition monitoring tools

Jan. 17, 2023
Sheila Kennedy says portable monitoring solutions provide on-demand evidence of asset conditions.

Modern condition monitoring tools don’t just detect equipment problems—they visualize them. From this information, even the most subtle issues can be planned and scheduled for corrective action or recorded and monitored for later attention. New proof points leverage audio, video, graphic imagery, and still images to aid in timely asset management.

See for yourself

Fixing compressed air leaks is a highly effective way to reduce energy consumption. The LD 500 / LD 510 from CS Instruments is a lightweight, intuitive ultrasound camera that helps to find and calculate leaks during production, even in noisy environments, so they can be addressed. It measures the ultrasound (inaudible sound) generated by compressed air, steam, gas, and vacuum leaks, as well as partial discharge on insulators, transformers, switchgear, and high-voltage lines.

The camera visualizes the leak location on the screen while also amplifying and mixing it into the audible sound frequency range so users can hear the leak from their headphones, observes Thomas Blessing, product manager at CS Instruments. Five LEDs and an ambient light sensor provide intelligent lighting in dark environments.

The new one-handed UltraView camera from UE Systems enables quick and precise detection of compressed air and gas leaks and partial discharge, while filtering out any background noise. Because of its 124 low-noise MEMS microphones, the UltraView has a very low signal-to-noise ratio so it can detect very small leaks and find partial discharges at a distance, says Peter Boon, a product manager for UE Systems.

The ultrasound camera uses phase-resolved partial discharge (PRPD) pattern recognition in order to clearly identify ultrasonic emissions from electrical sources. “A little help from AI makes sure users are not going after false positives,” explains Boon. Users can also download and analyze the sound files from detected leaks or partial discharge and integrate them with existing UE Systems software for further analysis.

The FLIR VS80 videoscope series from Teledyne FLIR is designed to help plant personnel quickly identify potential issues in hard-to-reach or unsafe locations, without disassembling equipment. Its compatible probes with waterproof (IP67) camera tips can be maneuvered into tight spaces or small openings to view live images or videos, which can be saved, documented, and shared. The probes support a variety of inspection types and are sold separately or as a kit.

“With seven different videoscope attachment options, condition monitoring personnel can conduct reference image comparisons on the display screen to make historical or standard image comparisons easier via live side-by-side references, in visible and/or infrared light, depending on the attachments used,” says Ken Williams, product manager at Teledyne FLIR.

A compact, portable configuration of Iris M, a proprietary Motion Amplification technology solution from RDI Technologies, was announced in 2022. Iris M Traveler simplifies the packaging and application of Iris M, which takes millions of measurements in under a second to detect subtle movement and vibration and make it visible to the human eye, allowing more time for correction before component or asset failure.

Development of Iris M Traveler was “a direct result of customer feedback to make the system more versatile, portable, and user-friendly using lightweight hardware and a touch-screen tablet,” explains product manager Mason McNally. “You can take the system on the go to take more data faster.”

Power quality logging, troubleshooting, and analysis is simplified with the 1770 Series Three-Phase Power Quality Analyzers from Fluke. The handheld devices capture more than 500 power quality parameters by default and provide guided setup to easily create custom views.

“The 1775 makes it possible to capture voltage transients and provides high-resolution event details in the form of waveforms, as well as providing a high-resolution trend plot to allow observations of the circuit before and after the event,” says Jason Axelson, power quality product specialist at Fluke Corporation. “The 1777 goes further to add higher speed transient capture for collection and observation of high-speed switching transients.”

Wireless data collection system Wi-care PURE (Portable Unit for Route and Expertise) extends I-care Reliability’s online vibration monitoring capabilities, including velocity and acceleration, by enabling on-demand oversight of critical equipment conditions. Compatible with all available I-care product lines, the portable system consists of Wi-care sensors, a tablet loaded with I-care’s tablet app, and the I-see cloud-based software platform. Route-based findings share the same database used by the online tools, providing a consolidated view of asset health.

About the Author

Sheila Kennedy | CMRP

Sheila Kennedy, CMRP, is a professional freelance writer specializing in industrial and technical topics. She established Additive Communications in 2003 to serve software, technology, and service providers in industries such as manufacturing and utilities, and became a contributing editor and Technology Toolbox columnist for Plant Services in 2004. Prior to Additive Communications, she had 11 years of experience implementing industrial information systems. Kennedy earned her B.S. at Purdue University and her MBA at the University of Phoenix. She can be reached at [email protected] or

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