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Handheld condition monitoring device detects imbalance in critical tanker exhaust fans

08 April 2009

Using its handheld vibration monitoring and balancing system, FAG Detector III, FAG Industrial Services (F’IS) has helped restore a tanker to full operation.

Handheld condition monitoring device detects imbalance in critical tanker exhaust fans
Handheld condition monitoring device detects imbalance in critical tanker exhaust fans

This has been done by rapidly diagnosing the cause of failure of two of the ship’s critical exhaust fans.

After spending 14 days in a German port due to defective exhaust fans, a 228-metre long tanker has now been restored to full operation thanks to rapid diagnosis and repair work by engineers from F’IS, the maintenance management and condition monitoring company within The Schaeffler Group.

With twelve tanks and a capacity of almost 80,000 cubic metres, the tanker cannot afford to be out of operation for long. Each week the tanker is out of operation costs the shipping company around 300,000 euros. The two damaged exhaust fans are critical to the tanker’s power supply system. If the fans are out of operation for any reason, critical operational systems on the tanker are affected.

Technicians from the German shipping company responsible for maintaining the tanker, spent two weeks in vain attempting to repair the damage to the exhaust fans. The service provider for the tanker manages a fleet of more than 30 ships, moving around 1.3 million tonnes of cargo each week. The company provides a comprehensive range of services, from shipbuilding and crew provision, to the handling of all administrative tasks.

F’IS reacted rapidly to the shipping company’s request for help by sending a technician to the site. Using FAG Detector III, the technician was quickly able to determine the root cause of the problem – an imbalance of the fan impellers – and then repair this fault immediately.

Since any damage to an exhaust fan can prevent the tanker from continuing its journey, F’IS provided the shipping company with clear recommendations on how failures such as these could be avoided in the future. This included regular cleaning, maintenance and vibration monitoring of the fans.

FAG Detector III is used for the early detection of damage in rotating machine elements such as rolling bearings. The device is available with an optional, extended operational balancing function. The customer can activate this function at a later stage after purchasing the basic unit. The device can be used to balance rotors and shafts in both static and dynamic balancing applications, on diverse range of rotating equipment, including machine tools, pumps, electric motors, fans, compressors, ventilators, gearboxes and spindles.
FAG Detector III is available with a full range of accessories required to carry out a balancing process, including sensors, trigger, magnetic holder and reflection marks.

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