Over the years, through advancements in both ultrasound instrumentation and software, more maintenance and reliability personnel have begun to use ultrasound technology for more than just compressed air leak detection. Three applications in particular have seen a large increase in usage: condition monitoring of bearings and rotating equipment, condition based lubrication using ultrasound, and electrical inspection of energised electrical equipment.
What is ultrasound?
Ultrasonic equipment detects airborne and structure-borne ultrasounds normally inaudible to the human ear and electronically “transposes” them into audible signals that a technician can hear through headphones and view on a display panel as a dB level. On some instruments, incoming sound can also be viewed on a spectral analysis screen which shows either the FFT or Time Wave Form. With this information, a trained technician can interpret the bearing condition in order to determine what, if any, corrective action is needed, and the current data can be compared on the spot to the baseline data.