Latest Instrumentation Articles

For controller-to-controller coordination, wireless Bluetooth is an excellent alternative to Class 3 radios.

Your company has recently purchased a laser based alignment system. Your newly trained technicians are asked to align a critical process pump. You witness the alignment. They save the final alignment data. You review the data, but what does it mean? How does it compare to dial indicators? Why did they rotate both shafts when measuring the misalignment? Why are the numbers at the feet higher than you would like? How do you KNOW the alignment is good? The debate begins.

Today's electricians are often found working in applications outside the realm of what is traditionally considered "electrical." Through new programs sponsored by the IBEW-JATC training schools and others, the skill sets of the electrical union workforce have broadened to include automation and controls.

A variable frequency drive (VFD) can be a valuable asset in reducing the life cycle costs in certain types of pumping applications. The traditional method of motor control in pumping applications is a low cost mechanical starter, which is essentially a large switch with a built-in motor protection device known as a thermal overload relay. A conscious decision to reduce upfront costs by using a mechanical starter may result in higher energy consumption, excessive component wear and poor power quality.

Production, distribution and refining applications in the oil and gas industry rely heavily on motor-driven pumps and pumping systems. Keeping electric motors driving critical operations at peak performance is vital to ensure maximum profitability.

A recent marketing survey found that 84.0 percent of satisfied customers would "jump ship" for a better deal if an opportunity arose. With markets becoming increasingly globalized, customer retention has become a critical part of business strategy. Companies need to ask themselves: What reason can I give this customer to stay, even if my competitor offers a cheaper price? The keys lie in keeping customers loyal to brands and products and ensuring a consistently outstanding customer experience.

When it comes to pressure and flow, variable speed pumping applications can be divided into three basic categories. Constant pressure-variable flow (Cp-Vf) attempts to keep pressure relatively constant over a range of flows. Constant flow-variable pressure (Cf-Vp) tries to achieve the opposite by using varying pressure to keep flow constant. Variable pressure-variable flow (Vp-Vf) applications can accommodate a change in both.

The small town of Groin, Mo., has an excellent source of water. The water board says its wells and distribution system are coasting along at about half the maximum capacity. Since demand is growing at less than 2 percent per year, it would be reasonable to assume the current system is more than adequate for many years.

In recent years, adjustable frequency AC drives have become increasingly popular as they provide an efficient, direct method of controlling the speed of the most rugged and reliable of prime movers, the squirrel cage motor. They provide a spectrum of benefits for a broad range of applications.

A crucial triumvirate for improving the bottom line. pump system optimization, pump efficiency

Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS) radio was invented during World War II by the military for communicating information and strategic plans to allied forces in a way that would counter enemy efforts to "jam" or intercept traditional radio communication frequencies.

Last year in “Trending Revelations in Vibration Analysis,” (Pumps & Systems, June 2009), I discussed the importance of statistic trending in vibrations analysis. Usually, as most would expect, vibrations gradually increase with time. This increase reflects the normal internal wear, accumulative misalignment and deformations that can occur within a pump. All these wear conditions will lead to eventual failure.

Enveloping is a tool that can give more information about the life and health of important plant assets. It is primarily used for early detection of faults in rolling element bearings and gearboxes. Enveloped acceleration is an especially valuable parameter to trend, as the progression of machine condition can be evaluated. Armed with good information and assisted by service experts, plant engineers can be confident in the proper operation and management of the important assets in their care.

Lift stations can be difficult and costly to monitor, especially when the stations are located in remote areas.

Have you ever wondered why a motor manufacturer would state that many of their 60-Hz motors will operate on 50-Hz power as long as you reduce the nameplate voltage by 1/6?

Wireless technology has significantly impacted business worldwide. It enables a greater degree of connectivity among devices for enhanced monitoring and utilization of existing assets. It has also led to the development of new applications that improve productivity, uptime and overall business performance.

Economic pressures to minimize production downtime and improve operating efficiency are increasing the emphasis to accomplish on-site problem detection, analysis, and resolution as fast as possible. These requirements place a great deal of pressure on maintenance personnel to have all the right tools readily available in one place.

To achieve a sustainable future, the green movement demands increased energy efficiency and conservation. Here is a look at how these changes will impact the water industry and its use of pumps and controls.

In the early days of adjustable frequency drive (AFD) technology, the typical application was in process control for manufacturing synthetic fiber, steel bars and aluminum foil. Because AFDs improved performance and lowered maintenance costs, they replaced motor generator sets and DC drives. When the energy crises occurred in the early 1970s, saving energy became a critical goal, and the use of AFDs quickly spreadpump efficiency, into large pump applications and eventually into HVAC fan systems. pump efficiency, pump system optimization

Balancing is essential for minimizing vibration, increasing bearing life and minimizing downtime and repair costs. Follow the guidelines from these standards to balance centrifugal pumps properly.

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