Cooling tower fin fan gearbox failure

Cooling tower fin fan gearbox failure    

detected early, avoiding costly repair.

Client: Mineral refinery.

Tough Problem: Vibration measurements indicated multiple developing faults with a fin-fan gearbox (see Figure 1).

Practical Solution: A bearing defect frequency was diagnosed and followed up by a study of gear mesh frequencies. This information was used to determine how long the gearbox would last before failure.

When the gearbox was removed and inspected a failing bearing was found. This failure had allowed the gears to move, causing the gear mesh fault frequency in the spectrum.

Bottom Line: Early identification of problem allowed for gearbox replacement before the gears were damaged avoiding costly repair.



Figure 1: Gearbox bearing fault signature