Case Study: Extending bearing life by using Ultrasound to identify lubrication problems

Tom Murphy, SDT Ultrasound Solutions


This presentation draws on a series of cases where bearing life was limited by the conflict of too many people wanting to do the right thing.
In the first case we examine what happens when you put the wrong grease into a bearing for what appeared to be the right reason – in this case a high temperature grease into a not-so-high temperature application.
The second case examines a common problem found in food factories – the conflict between the lubrication team and the food hygiene cleaners.
Finally, we look at a case where the need to turn over a bearing replacement quickly, led to shortcuts resulting in rapid failure of the newly-installed replacement bearing.

In all three cases we examine how Ultrasound helped to identify the root-cause problems and aided the engineering team to develop a better approach for a more reliable future.


Name: Thomas J. Murphy Resident: Manchester, England Job Title: Managing Director, Reliability Team Limited; SDT International Training Manager Education:Bachelor degree in Electroacoustics, University of Salford Status:Member of Institute of Acoustics (MIOA); Chartered Engineer (C. Eng.); Certified Reliability Leader (CRL Experience:34 years experience in the application of noise and vibration to a wide range of industry around the world; 22 years experience in infrared technology; 17 years experience in ultrasound; Facilitator in FMEA and RCA projects Current work:ASNT Level 1 and Level 2 ultrasound trainer; ISO TC108 national technical representative; Implementation training on ultrasound and predictive programmes to industry around the world. Author:Co-author, Murphy, T.J., Rienstra, A.A, Hear More, A Guide to Using Ultrasound for Leak Detection and Condition Monitoring. ISBN-13: 978-0982516331; Technical papers and articles presented and printed in many countries around the world.