Showing posts with label Maryand. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Maryand. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Vibration Analysis in Manufacturing and Process Control

Vibration graph
Image courtesy of Wikipedia
As all of us who ride or drive an automobile with some regularity know, certain mechanical faults or problems produce symptoms that can be detected by our sense of feel. Vibrations felt in the steering wheel can be an indicator of an out-of-balance wheel or looseness in the steering linkage. Transmission gear problems can be felt on the shift linkage. Looseness in exhaust system components can sometimes be felt as vibrations in the floorboard. The common thread with all these problems is that degeneration of some mechanical device beyond permissible operational design limitations has manifested itself by the generation of abnormal levels of vibration. What is vibration and what do we mean by levels of vibration? The dictionary defines vibration as “a periodic motion of the particles of an elastic body or medium in alternately opposite directions from the position of equilibrium when that equilibrium has been disturbed or the state of being vibrated or in vibratory motion as in (1) oscillation or (2) a quivering or trembling motion.”

The key elements to take away from this definition are vibration is motion, and this motion is cyclic around a position of equilibrium. How many times have you touched a machine to see if it was running? You are able to tell by touch if the motor is running because of vibration generated by motion of rotational machine components and the transmittal of these forces to the machine housing. Many parts of the machine are rotating and each one of these parts is generating its own distinctive pattern and level of vibration. The level and frequency of these vibrations are different and the human touch is not sensitive enough to discern these differences. This is where vibration detection instrumentation and signature analysis software can provide us the necessary sensitivity. Sensors are used to quantify the magnitude of vibration or how rough or smooth the machine is running. This is expressed as vibration amplitude. This magnitude of vibration is expressed as:

Displacement – The total distance traveled by the vibrating part from one extreme limit of travel to the other extreme limit of travel. This distance is also called the “peak-to-peak displacement.”

Velocity – A measurement of the speed at which a machine or machine component is moving as it undergoes oscillating motion.

Acceleration – The rate of change of velocity. Recognizing that vibrational forces are cyclic, both the magnitude of displacement and velocity change from a neutral or minimum value to some maximum. Acceleration is a value representing the maximum rate that velocity (speed of the displacement) is increasing.

GE Bently Nevada
GE Bently Nevada is a leading provider of vibration
analysis instruments and software.
Various transducers are available that will sense and provide an electrical output reflective of the vibrational displacement, velocity, or acceleration. The specific unit of measure to best evaluate the machine condition will be dependent on the machine speed and design. Several guidelines have been published to provide assistance in determination of the relative running condition of a machine. It should be said that guidelines are not absolute vibration limits above which the machine will fail and below which the machine will run indefinitely. It is impossible to establish absolute vibration limits. However, in setting up a predictive maintenance program, it is necessary to establish some severity criteria or limits above which action will be taken. Keep in mind that guidelines are not intended to be used for establishing vibration acceptance criteria for rebuilt or newly installed machines. They are to be used to evaluate the general or overall condition of machines that are already installed and operating in service. For those, setting up a predictive maintenance program, lacking experience or historical data, similar charts can serve as an excellent guide to get started.

As indicated earlier, many vibration signals are generated at one time. Once a magnitude of vibration exceeds some predetermined value, vibration signature analysis can be used in defining the machine location that is the source of the vibration and in need of repair or replacement. By using analysis equipment and software, the individual vibration signals are separated and displayed in a manner that defines the magnitude of vibration and frequency. With the understanding of machine design and operation, an individual schooled in vibration signature analysis can interpret this information to define the machine problem to a component level.

Vibration monitoring and analysis can be used to discover and diagnose a wide variety of problems related to rotating equipment. The following list provides some generally accepted abnormal equipment conditions/faults where this predictive maintenance technology can be of use in defining existing problems:
  • Unbalance
  • Eccentric rotors
  • Misalignment
  • Resonance problems
  • Mechanical looseness/weakness
  • Rotor rub
  • Sleeve-bearing problems
  • Rolling element bearing problems
  • Flow-induced vibration problems
  • Gear problems
  • Electrical problems
  • Belt drive problems
Analyzing equipment to determine the presence of these problems is not a simple and easily performed procedure. Properly performed and evaluated vibration signature analysis requires highly trained and skilled individuals, knowledgeable in both the technology and the equipment being tested. Determination of some of the problems listed is less straightforward than other problems and may require many hours of experience by the technician to properly diagnosis the condition.

To learn more about vibration analysis and critical asset monitoring, contact Flow-Tech at 410-666-3200 or visit http://www.flowtechonline.com.

Article abstracted from US DOE Operations & Maintenance Best Practices Release 3.0

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Centralized Gas Monitoring for Industry

Drager REGARD 7000
The Drager REGARD 7000 is a modular and highly expandable analysis system for monitoring various gases and vapors. Suitable for gas warning systems with various levels of complexity and numbers of transmitters, the Drager REGARD 7000 also features exceptional reliability and efficiency. An additional benefit is the backward compatibility with the REGARD.

For more information in Maryland or Virginia, contact Flow-Tech at 410666-3200 or visit http://www.flowtechonline.com.

Check out the video below to learn more about the Drager REGARD 7000. Thanks for watching.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Writing LabVIEW™ Programs for Brooks® Mass Flow Controllers (MFCs)

Brooks Instrument has been innovating thermal mass flow technology for decades, continually launching new products and enhancing existing systems to unlock new levels of thermal mass flow precision, responsiveness, accuracy and repeatability.

LabVIEW™ is systems engineering software for applications that require test, measurement, and control with rapid access to hardware and data insights. LabVIEW simplifies hardware integration so that you can rapidly acquire and visualize data sets from virtually any I/O device, whether by NI or a third-party.

Brooks® MFCs are known for:
  • Industry-best range of products to meet widest application needs
  • Innovative MultiFlo™ technology lets one device change gas types and ranges without removing the device from the system and improving actual process gas accuracy
  • Complete product range includes both elastomer sealed and metal sealed options
  • Ultra-high purity devices engineered to satisfy thin film, semiconductor and other high-tech industry requirements.
The video below provides step-by-step instructions on writing a LabVIEW™ program for Brooks Instrument MFC's.

For more information, visit http://www.Flowtechonline.com/Brooks. In Maryland call 410-666-3200. In Virginia call 804-752-3450.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

FCI ST100 and ST110 Thermal Dispersion Flow Meters

FCI flow meters
FCI flow meters
FCI flow meters operate on the principle of thermal dispersion. The flow meter circuitry measures the temperature differential between a heated and a non-heated sensors.  The greater the mass flow rate, the less temperature differential between the two sensors.

FCI flow meters
FCI ST100
The ST100 series transmitter is unsurpassed in meeting your current and future need for outputs, process information and communications. Whether your output needs are traditional 4-20 mA analog, frequency/pulse, alarm relays or advanced digital bus communications such as HART, FOUNDATION Fieldbus, PROFIBUS, or Modbus, ST100 has you covered. ST100's bus communications have been certified by and are registered devices with HART and Foundation Fieldbus. In addition, Emerson Process (Delta V), Yokogawa and ABB (800xA) have tested and verified ST100 Series' FOUNDATION Fieldbus interoperability with their systems. Should you ever need to change or upgrade, ST100 can be converted to any of these outputs with a simple card change in the field.

FCI flow meters
FCI ST110
Many alternative flow meters require periodic removal from service verify calibration which can be expensive if the flow meter needs to be sent back to the factory. The FCI ST110 is capable of calibration verification without being taken out of service.

ST100 flow meters offer the following advantages over other gas flow technologies:
  • Three, 4-20 mA outputs for flow, temperature, and/or optional pressure
  • Very high turn down ratios - up to 1000:1
  • Digital communication options of Foundation Fieldbus, PROFIBUS,  HART or Modbus 
  • The data logging via removable SD card
Ruggedness, accuracy, and superior quality made FCI the leader in thermal dispersion mass flow meters, flow switches and level switches for industrial process measurement applications. FCI air and gas flow meters are applied from small dosing lines to the largest stacks. For more information about FCI in Maryland or Virginia, visit http://www.flowtechonline.com or call 410-666-3200.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Choose Thermal Dispersion Flow and Level Technology for Your Next Application

thermal dispersion flow and level
Thermal Dispersion flow and level
switches (courtesy of FCI)
Thermal Dispersion flow and level switches are found in continuous operation in the most demanding and critical process and plant applications. This technology is the most preferred solution in oil and gas upstream and downstream applications; wastewater treatment; chemical operations; power plants, including nuclear power; food and beverage; refineries; mining; metals; manufacturing and more. Whether your application is for flow, level, flow + temperature or level + temperature, there is an thermal dispersion flow and level switches are available to meet your needs.

The reasons for their popularity are clear. They were developed from more than 40 years of flow and level switch engineering and application experience to deliver the most reliable, repeatable, rugged and longest life industrial grade switch products found anywhere.

Thermal Dispersion technology uses the principle of measuring the heat loss, or cooling effect, of a fluid flowing across a heated cylinder. A typical flow element configuration uses two RTDs, sheathed in thermowells, separated by a gap. Heat is applied internally to one RTD relative to the other, creating a differential temperature between the two. This differential temperature is greatest at no flow conditions and decreases as flow increases, cooling the heated RTD.

Changes in flow velocity or immersion of the flow element into a liquid directly affect the extent to which heat is dissipated and, in turn the magnitude of the temperature differential between the RTDs. This differential is electronically converted into an electrical signal that can be used to trip a relay in flow or interface switch applications.

Since the relationship between flow rate and cooling effect is directly related to mass in gas applications, Thermal Dispersion technology, combined with advanced signal linearizing circuitry, is used to provide a highly repeatable and accurate measurement of gas or air mass flow rates.

Advantages to Using Thermal Dispersion

  • Precise performance accuracy
  • No moving parts
  • All welded design
  • All 316L stainless steel, Hastelloy, or exotic materials
  • Designed for heavy industrial environments
  • High liquid flow rate sensitivity
  • High temperature service
  • All liquids and gases

Additionally, models are available with 316L stainless steel wetted parts that are electro-polished to 20 Ra, with a sanitary flange process connection meet the sanitary requirements of the food, beverage, pharmaceutical and chemical industries. The instrument’s "no moving parts" design makes it ideal for monitoring the flow of syrups, fillings and other viscous media and product slurries. This design is suitable for both clean-in-place and steam-in-place applications.

For more information about Thermal Dispersion flow and level products, contact:

Flow-Tech, Inc.
10940 Beaver Dam Rd
Hunt Valley, MD 21030
Ph: 410-666-3200

Central VA Office
10993 Richardson Rd#13
Ashland, VA 23005
Ph: 804-752-3450

Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Concept of Explosion Protection Venting

Explosion venting products
Explosion venting products
(courtesy of Fike)
When a spark or other ignition source ignites particulate in a vessel a fireball develops as material burns in grows at an exponential pace. The pressure front expands as the fireball grows reaching the explosion vent. The explosion vent opens at a specified pressure, limiting the stress on the vessel on allowing it to maintain structural integrity, while also releasing the pressure and allowing the fireball to vent into a safe area outside the facility.

Alternatively, when the process can not be vented safely outside, the explosion vent opens and directs the fireball into a flameless venting device. the flames are extinguished as they pass through the flame arresting screens allowing pressure release, but preventing dangerous flames from entering the work area protecting personnel and preventing secondary explosions. It is also necessary to isolate the deflagration, preventing the transmission the flame into interconnected vessels.

During a deflagration, the pressure wave from the explosion reaches the detector connected to the explosion protection control panel, which processes 4,000 data points per second. The system alarms at a preset pressure level and sends an activation signal to the isolation devices.

The system opens a rupture disk on isolation container that uses 500 psi of nitrogen to drive suppressant into the ductwork, providing a chemical isolation barrier that prevents the propagation of the explosion. the system maintains a history of the event for future reference.

Simultaneously, the gas cartridge actuator drives the piston on the isolation valve, closing the slide gate, and provides mechanical isolation which prevents the propagation of the explosion through the duct work too interconnected vessels.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Capacitance Manometers for Use in Lyophilization (Freeze-drying) Processes


Introduction

Lyophilization, also known as cryodesiccation, or more commonly “freeze-drying” is a dehydration process typically used to preserve a perishable material or make the material more convenient for transport. The freeze-drying process works by exposing a material that has been frozen to a vacuum environment. This lowers the vapor pressure of the frozen water contained in the material. Heat will be applied to the environment, driving the water out of the material through the process of sublimation.

In order to avoid the liquid phase of the frozen water, it is absolutely essential to lower the partial pressure of water, below the triple point pressure. The triple point is the point where 3 phases - liquid, solid, and vapor - coexist at a particular temperature and pressure. As the water vapor exits the sample, a chilled surface known as the ice condenser collects the vapor from the evolving product capturing it and preventing reabsorption or saturation of the chamber environment.

Applications

BioPharm manufacturing: Uses lyophilization to preserve products such as vaccines and other injectable drugs (parenterals). The removal of water from these materials allows for the preservation, shipping, and storage of smaller volumes of material. Tablets or wafers are also freeze dried often creating dosage forms which are more rapidly absorbed or more easily administered. Proteins, enzymes, microorganisms, and blood plasma are also examples of materials that are commonly lyophilized. In bioseparation processes, lyophilization is also used as a method to remove solvents that may be too costly or too difficult to remove by other means. FDA requires a higher temperature process manometer to be used in conjunction with a pirani gauge to understand when the “drying” is complete.

Food manufacturing: “Freeze-dried” foods help food manufacturers increase product shelf life and allows them to cater to the needs of consumers who are interested in convenience. The foods are typically easier to store and transport due to the removal of water and its associated weight. Foods last longer and can be used in environments outside the norm (e.g. wilderness, military situations, etc.) Common examples are coffee, fruits, and cereals.

Process Details

Once a material has been frozen, the environment in which the material lies is placed under partial vacuum, usually a few millibars. Heat is introduced forcing the frozen water to sublimate thereby exiting the material. That water vapor is often captured on a condensing coil and preventing it from re-entering the freeze dried material. It is important to note that the use of a heated capacitance manometer will prevent the unit from acting as a condenser of the water vapor.

In the final step of the process, the vacuum in the chamber is relieved by introducing an inert gas such as nitrogen. This gas regulation may be an area where Brooks Instrument variable area flow meters (rotameters) or MFCs could be supplied. “Downstream” packaging of freeze dried materials often involves “vacuum packaging” which attempts the complete removal of oxygen from the final packaged material. This is important because oxygen is the primary factor in product spoilage. Vacuum packaging may also present opportunities to sell CMX capacitance manometers.

Brooks Instrument Solutions - CMX – XacTorr Capacitance Manometer
XacTorr Capacitance Manometer
XacTorr Capacitance Manometer
  • Vacuum measurement instrument
  • Full scale ranges: 100mT to 1,000Torr
  • Gas independent technology, digital and not impacted by the water vapor
  • Digital zeroing at the unit or remotely – ability to predict remaining zero life
  • 64 Point calibration: ±0.15% of reading (0.25% <1Torr range)
  • Optimum configurations for all process
    • i. 160C 1 Torr is the typical configuration for freeze drying
  • Contamination resistant sensor: Longer life, lower cost of ownership. 3x larger internal sensor volume versus competitive
  • Industry standard 9-pin or 15-pin analog or DeviceNet interfaces
  • Available with common tri-clamp and industry standard fittings
  • Unique independent diagnostic and service port
For more information contact:

Flow-Tech, Inc.
10940 Beaver Dam Rd
Hunt Valley, MD 21030
Ph: 410-666-3200

Central VA Office
10993 Richardson Rd#13
Ashland, VA 23005
Ph: 804-752-3450