Condition Monitoring Explained

Connect Insight to Execution.

Deliver maintenance-based insight into the equipment driving your operations ensuring safety, reducing downtime, and improving reliability.

What Is Condition Monitoring Systems?

Condition monitoring (CM) is the process of monitoring a particular condition in machinery (such as vibration, temperature, etc) to identify changes that could indicate a developing fault. It is a major part of predictive maintenance as implementing condition monitoring allows for maintenance to be scheduled and preventive actions taken to prevent further failure and subsequent unplanned downtime.

Condition monitoring techniques are used on a range of equipment, including rotating machinery, auxiliary systems, and parts such as compressors, pumps, motors, and presses.

Traditional condition monitoring was mainly based around vibration analysis, but more modern, innovative techniques use sensors to measure different parameters in real-time and can send an alert when a change is detected.

Why is Condition Monitoring Important?

All maintenance and reliability programs have essentially the same goal: to ensure the plant’s production capacity effectively and efficiently. The ideal way to affect the accomplishment of this is to be proactive about dealing with machinery defects. The earlier we can detect a potential defect, the more time we will have to deal with the situation and avoid an urgent situation resulting in production loss or an unsafe environment.

It should be noted that proactive is not binary in nature, meaning it is not an either/or condition. Proactive should be seen as a continuum. So, by their actions, people can be placed along the continuum with some people being more proactive than others. The definition of proactive then is to act before the business necessity of the situation demands it; stated another way, proactive means to act before the cost of doing so increases. This definition of proactive helps us understand the benefit of early defect identification and early defect elimination. If an organization can find and fix the defects early enough, the number of emergencies, and the number of schedule interruptions, will decrease drastically.

What are the Various Types of Condition Monitoring Techniques?

    • Vibration Analysis
    • Infrared Thermography
    • Ultrasonic Analysis
    • Oil Analysis
    • Electrical Analysis
    • Pressure Analysis

Pros & Cons of Condition Monitoring

One of the major benefits of condition monitoring is that the technologies offer the organization a plethora of information about the nature of the defect and, to a large extent, information about the physical cause of the defect. This enables the organization to significantly enhance the effectiveness of the root cause analysis process and eliminate the possibility of this same defect occurring in the future. Condition monitoring gets its fame from being able to help the organization prevent unexpected failures. By finding the defects early, the organization can plan and schedule the outage and therefore not experience the surprise of machinery failure when least expected.

Another benefit of condition monitoring is the amount of specific information that the data from the technologies can provide the maintenance technicians about the nature of the problem. By using some of these technologies, specific defects are identified, such as ‘inner race defects found on both pump bearing’, instead of the general indication of ‘pump making strange noise’. By and large, this reduces the troubleshooting time and costs associated with ‘parts swapping until the problem is solved’. This also reduces the total amount of downtime for a repair, thus increasing availability and possibly even productivity.

Condition monitoring enables the planning and scheduling process in three ways. First, condition monitoring identifies the defects early enough to allow the planning and scheduling process to take its natural flow. Nothing must be expedited or rushed, and production schedules do not have to be changed at the last minute.

Second, it gives the planner something specific to plan. Because of how precise the problem can be pinpointed to; the planner can kit a specific collection of parts and have confidence that the required parts are there, and the maintenance technicians will not have to stop the job to go find what they need.

Third, the early detection of the fault means that more parts can be ordered, and fewer parts have to be kept in stock. While there are several benchmark case histories and success stories published in industry trade magazines, the specific list of benefits is almost universal.

A typical list includes: → Maintenance costs reduced by 50% → Unexpected failures reduced by 55% → Repair and overhaul time reduced by 50% → Spare parts inventory reduced by 30% → Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) increased by 30% → Machinery availability increased by 30%

Industries Served

Allied Reliability’s condition monitoring systems benefit these industries:

  • Oil & Gas
  • Chemical Processing
  • Mining & Materials
  • Food & Beverage
  • Building & Composite Material
  • Commercial
  • Energy
  • Government
  • Automotive
  • Metals
  • Pulp & Paper
  • Shipping
  • Transportation
  • And more...

Any industry that leverages equipment to produce something. All manufacturing industries.

Case Study: Tire Manufacturing Industry

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Customer Success Story: Automotive Rubber

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Customer Success Story: Automotive

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Customer Success Story: Chemical Processing

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Customer Success Story: Plastic Fabrication

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Why Choose Allied Reliability?

  • Experience: The heritage of our company attracts and allows us to hire some of the best and most seasoned experts in our field. Together our practitioners represent expertise across more verticals than any other provider. That knowledge is captured in our management systems and best practices to ensure consistent, high-quality service delivery to our clients.
  • Partner: When you hire us, you hire a partner. We don’t drop the recommendation on your desk and leave. Instead, we listen and develop a solution that meets your challenge regardless of where you are on your journey. Then we develop leadership alignment and a governance structure to ensure our solutions are understood and adopted. We stay with you through execution, helping where needed, capturing KPIs, and helping with continuous improvement.
  • Lifecycle: We have a proven asset performance management methodology to help you manage your assets across their entire lifecycle. The approach ensures that business strategy is connected to asset strategy, facilitates continuous improvement, and allows for entry into the process at any point regardless of company maturity.

Allied Reliability's Competitive Advantages:

  • Long historic data
  • Widest & most flexible range of offerings
  • One-stop-shop
  • Best of the best resources

All equipment gives off early warning signals – such as changes in temperature, vibration, or sound – before it fails. These warning signals, or failure modes, can be detected with certain Condition Monitoring (CM) equipment.

The problem is that one or two technologies alone cannot detect most of the warning signals in your plant. As a result, a single-technology CBM program will miss far more faults than it catches. The key to a successful CBM program is to make sure it is highly sensitive to the failure modes of your equipment. That is why you need to apply multiple technologies, so you can detect most failure modes in your plant.

Ultimately, it is your equipment’s failure modes and criticality that determine which technologies you apply.

Allied Reliability has over 30 years of experience identifying asset criticality and failure modes on equipment in various industries. We bring that knowledge to the table to help our clients understand what is most likely to cause a failure in their process and how best to detect that failure (i.e., what technology to use to detect it) proactively.

Allied has developed and implemented our complete condition-based maintenance work process for many successful customers over our 30-year history. Any customer can leverage the condition-based maintenance work process regardless of their condition monitoring strategy and whether they are using a single or multiple condition monitoring technologies (vibration, Infrared, oil analysis, etc...). The overall condition-based maintenance process depicted below demonstrates how we support all execution models.

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