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Proceedings Paper

Usefulness of high-resolution thermography in fault diagnosis of fluid power components and systems
Author(s): Matti Pietola; Jukka P. Varrio
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Paper Abstract

Infrared thermography has been used routinely in industrial applications for quite a long time. For example, the condition of electric power lines, district heating networks, electric circuits and components, heat exchangers, pipes and its insulations, cooling towers, and various machines and motors is monitored using infrared imaging techniques. Also the usage of this technology in predictive maintenance has proved successful, mainly because of effective computers and tailored softwares available. However, the usage of thermal sensing technique in fluid power systems and components (or other automation systems in fact) is not as common. One apparent reason is that a fluid power circuit is not (and nor is a hydraulic component) an easy object of making thermal image analyses. Especially the high flow speed, fast pressure changes and fast movements make the diagnosis complex and difficult. Also the number of people whose knowledge is good both in thermography and fluid power systems is not significant. In this paper a preliminary study of how thermography could be used in the condition monitoring, fault diagnosis and predictive maintenance of fluid power components and systems is presented. The shortages and limitations of thermal imaging in the condition monitoring of fluid power are also discussed. Among many other cases the following is discussed: (1) pressure valves (leakage, wrong settings), (2) check valves (leakage); (3) cylinders (leakage and other damages); (4) directional valves and valve assemblies; (5) pumps and motors (leakage in piston or control plate, bearings). The biggest advantage of using thermography in the predictive maintenance and fault diagnosis of fluid power components and systems could be achieved in the process industry and perhaps in the commissioning of fluid power systems in the industry. In the industry the predictive maintenance of fluid power with the aid of an infrared camera could be done as part of a condition monitoring of other systems, for instance bearings.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 March 1996
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 2766, Thermosense XVIII: An International Conference on Thermal Sensing and Imaging Diagnostic Applications, (15 March 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.235372
Show Author Affiliations
Matti Pietola, Helsinki Univ. of Technology (Finland)
Jukka P. Varrio, Riihimaki Institute of Technology (Finland)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2766:
Thermosense XVIII: An International Conference on Thermal Sensing and Imaging Diagnostic Applications
Douglas D. Burleigh; Jane W. Maclachlan Spicer, Editor(s)

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