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BLOG > July 2018 > Thermographs in Generator Operations

Thermographs in Generator Operations

Thermographs can be an important tool in maintenance and troubleshooting.

Thermographs and Engines

Engine Thermograph
The most basic definition of a thermograph is an instrument that produces a continuous record of fluctuating temperature. Some common thermographs are:
  • Hygro-Thermograph - Temperature and humidity readings recorded on graph paper located on a drum. Graph paper must be changed, depending on time settings. Used in spaces that are temperature and humidity critical.
  • Infrared Thermometer - More advanced models use laser pointer technology and can measure various temperature ranges. Recording capabilities are not uncommon. Some units can be connected to computers to download information. This unit is limited to a single point temperature reading. Many points must be measured to form an accurate temperature picture.
  • Thermal Infrared Camera - The hand-held instrument offers a color display screen. Scanning large areas with simple point and shoot technology is a common feature. More advanced models offer software that allows interface with computers and other smart devices. 
Thermography is the temperature measurement of operating surfaces of equipment. Temperature changes offer an indication of problems that can occur in diesel engines. In facilities that must have an un-interruptible power supply (hospitals, data centers, power plants, etc.) thermograpic inspections are part of a maintenance plan. They identify exhaust leaks, generator end bearing temperatures, cylinder exhaust temperatures, and thermal mixing of cooling systems.

Thermographs and Controls
Controls Thermograph
Controls in a power distribution system can be comprised of various components and connections.

Thermography inspections should be conducted on following electrical components:
  • Automatic Transfer Switches (ATS)
  • Manual transfer switch
  • Electrical switch gear
  • Power distribution units
  • Distribution systems.
Benefits of adding thermography to your maintenance plan are numerous. They can identify and correct hidden problems before they become an outage issue. Loose connections and failing components can generate a higher than normal heat signature. 

Identifying issues at an early stage reduces repair costs and ensures your emergency supply and controls system perform as needed when required. Facilities can outsource the analysis and receive recommendations for repair. Those with an established maintenance force may choose to purchase the equipment to perform the measurement and add it into their existing maintenance schedule.

Diesel Blog Team | 7/23/2018 12:13:04 PM | 0 comments
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