Safety in your factory or test stands should always be a priority. Anywhere high pressure or high velocity are at play, being able to monitor the process and changing conditions, with accuracy, while your team members stay at a safe distance is key.
According to OSHA,
"Twenty-two million workers are exposed to potentially damaging noise at work each year. In 2017, U.S. business paid more than $1.5 million in penalties for not protecting workers from noise." OSHA.gov
One key area that OSHA discusses is engineering controls that can be implemented in a manufacturing environment to reduce noise levels at the worker's ear such as:
Modifying or replacing equipment;
Making related physical changes at the noise source;
Making changes along the transmission path;
Choosing low-noise tools and machinery;
Maintain and lubricate machinery and equipment (e.g., oil bearings);
Placing a barrier between the noise source and employee (e.g., sound walls or curtains);
Enclose or isolate the noise source.
A customer manufactures high-pressure hydraulic power units (HPUs) for testing ram airplane turbines (RAT) to verify performance. Motors are mounted to an adapter and mating shaft, connected through a torque/speed sensor, and loaded using a water brake dynamometer. The RAT must reach 5,000 rpm for a successful simulation. A pyrometer monitors the water temperature in the RAT.
This creates a potentially unsafe situation for manual monitoring:
High-velocity shrapnel and hot liquids in the event of a failure
Noise as loud as 90-95 dbA
Technicians monitor the gauges from a distance in a remote test lab using a video camera pointed at the measuring devices. However, vibrations from the motor made the analog gauge difficult to read accurately.
Installing a SensoNODE™ Blue pressure sensor and temperature sensor gives technicians a wireless solution that eliminates the need for the video setup. Technicians can run tests while viewing the readings from the lab using their mobile devices with Voice of the Machine™ Mobile software. The digital readout ensures an accurate reading.
Condition monitoring is done easily and at a safer distance.
Technicians get immediate and accurate readings while varying the flow and load on the motor being tested.
Readings can be recorded and stored for documentation.
SensoNODE Blue sensors and Voice of the Machine Mobile software improved the efficiency of the diagnostic process, allowing for reduced process time. Operators can run the needed tests without exposure to the high-decibel noise or flying parts/liquids in the event of a product failure.
SensoNODE™ Blue is Parker’s series of Bluetooth-powered sensors. Compact, energy-efficient, and wireless, they are designed to provide simple and useful solutions for diagnostic and condition monitoring applications. SensoNODE monitors assets to help predict problems and prevent downtime and delivers the information to your mobile device.
Voice of the Machine™ Mobile software gives access to machine and process measurements right on your mobile device. The user-friendly interface makes connecting to sensors uncomplicated and measurements easy-to-read. With customizable dashboards and alarms, you can focus on the data that’s most important to you and be alerted when your measurement thresholds are exceeded. Exporting of data is done with a click of one button, which sends a .csv file right to your email.
Article contributed by David Shannon, business team manager, Parker Quick Coupling Division
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