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Proceedings Paper

Role of comparative and qualitative thermography in predictive maintenance
Author(s): Richard Norman Wurzbach; Robert G. Hammaker
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Paper Abstract

Performing a complete thermographic survey for a utility, process plant, etc. involves looking at hundreds of components. Generally, they are multiple pieces of identical equipment which operate simultaneously, and the redundancy allows for comparative evaluation between these pieces of equipment. When performing this evaluation with thermography, valuable information can be obtained for a predictive maintenance program. Some applications exist where quantitative data is not required to diagnose and recommend appropriate corrective action. In these cases, qualitative techniques may be adequate in providing the needed information. Most applications, however, require assigning values to observed thermal patterns for the purposes of trending, designating severity levels, and assigning priorities. In these cases, comparative thermography can be used to provide the best available data in lieu of ideal thermal measurement capabilities. Changing load considerations, techniques in performing rough emissivity estimates, and the ability to differentiate emissivity differences on energized or rotating equipment give the predictive maintenance engineer the ability to provide useful information under the less—than—ideal circumstances frequently encountered in the field.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 April 1992
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 1682, Thermosense XIV: An Intl Conf on Thermal Sensing and Imaging Diagnostic Applications, (1 April 1992); doi: 10.1117/12.58518
Show Author Affiliations
Richard Norman Wurzbach, Philadelphia Electric Co. (United States)
Robert G. Hammaker, Electric Power Research Institute (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1682:
Thermosense XIV: An Intl Conf on Thermal Sensing and Imaging Diagnostic Applications
Jan K. Eklund, Editor(s)

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