We provide annual and quarterly predictive maintenance surveys, and provide a rapid respond service for emergency incidents:
Periodic Thermographic Inspection Reports
Predictive maintenance involves monitoring equipment over time for conditions that indicate impending failure, determining whether corrective action is required and, if necessary, taking action before equipment failure. Predictive maintenance (PdM) is especially important to power generation facilities because so many are operating beyond their predicted lifespan.
At Building Response, our IR Thermographers identify critical components and systems, determine how often they need to be monitored, set up inspection routines and schedules, and regularly measure key indicators. A baseline inspection is required in order to have a reference point for comparison between later findings and the original condition. We then compare measurements over time, looking for changes in operating conditions that could indicate potential breakdowns. The benefits of thermal imaging are plentiful.
Our qualified thermographers are available year round to inspect components and measure key indicators which may fluctuate or become problematic with seasonal change. We often conduct quarterly surveys as part of a thermographic PdM routine schedule, providing the client with a professional report for their records.
Infrared Thermography Inspections
Infrared thermography can be an effective PdM tool for several important power plant components and systems, including:
Power distribution: Consistent, reliable electricity delivery is one of a power generator’s highest priorities and infrared thermography is a viable method of regularly monitoring power distribution equipment.
At many power plants, switchyard inspections are performed during periods of maximum load, even though weather conditions at that time of day can mask serious problems. Switchyard inspections are therefore normally carried out before dawn to avoid solar reflections and wind effects. The load is often lighter but other significant variables can be better accounted for, so any observable problems are more likely to be detected.
Boilers, pipes, traps and valves: While efficient electricity delivery is essential, efficient production is equally important. In a thermal power plant, when steam valves leak or fail, high energy content steam or water blows through to the condenser; money is thus wasted. Our thermal imaging services can be used by plant maintenance staff to regularly scan pipes, valves and traps to identify problems early on and thus control costs.
Energy Loss Thermography
Because energy losses are not limited to steam lines, infrared thermography can also be used for boiler inspection to identify areas of insulation breakdown. Hot areas on boiler walls indicate areas of worn insulation and energy losses. Infrared thermography helps identify these areas so they can be addressed.
A vast majority of infrared analysis is qualitative and comparative; that is, similar pieces of equipment are examined and compared. In advanced PdM systems, various system components/ equipment may have their own monitoring program. One example is pulverizer motor inspection; consider a power plant that has 27, 400- 500 horsepower motors driving pulverisers that feed the boilers. The plant has a motor casing monitoring program and regularly examines the case temperature for each motor.
The National Electrical Manufacturers Association temperature ratings are posted on the motors’ nameplates, indicating baseline operating temperatures. The normal temperature is approximately 48 – 50 degrees Celsius, depending on ambient conditions. A 4 degree temperature rise usually indicates the need to clean the filters. When the rise exceeds 4 degrees, it indicates that the motor needs to be cleaned and reconditioned. Assuming the motors are all about the same size and operate under similar loads, it’s a fairly simple matter for our Building Response Thermal Imaging specialists to identify “hot” motors and address the situation.
Building Response provide advanced and intuitive thermography capabilities involving interpretation, identification, locating and correlating details within individual infrared images produced during the course of routine maintenance surveys. While issues like emissivity are minimized by dirty metal surfaces, other issues like reflections, convective losses due to wind and other conditions can lead to erroneous conclusions. Our qualified infrared thermographers are skilled and knowledgeable regarding the principles of heat transfer, reflectance, emittance and transmission, and the images we produces are extremely useful for accurate and timely PdM.
Contact Building Response through the number provided above, or via email; our emergency service team are available 24 hours a day 7 days a week 52 weeks of the year. Contact us for an estimate or to begin the predictive maintenance procedure; remember, one the problem occurs, if you have no prior data, it is harder to diagnose. The sooner you have baseline data in the form of thermal images and accurate thermal measurements, the better prepared you will be when or if something goes wrong. It is always the best idea to have a reference point and backup plan!