Solid State Viscometer For Real-Time, On-Line And In-Line Oil Condition Monitoring

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Viscosity control for product quality and process control is a crucial aspect of a wide spectrum in manufacturing operation. As suppliers focus on customer satisfaction and consistency of product, viscosity becomes more important to measure and directly influences cost efficiency and quality in most processes. In the oil condition monitoring industry (which includes machine, contamination and lubrication condition), viscosity measurements is form of monitoring machine condition and has challenged process engineers and quality control departments since it can be affected greatly by physical variables. Viscosity of oil changes because of temperature, load, and as well as due to the oxidation and contamination of the oil during service.

Additionally in OEM applications, there is a need for the solution provider to deliver a valued-added feature for constant monitoring of viscosity, for example in the dispense control of lube oil blends, or in compressors for monitoring of the oil-refrigerant mixture. Viscosity management can result in significant savings for equipment that is on a condition monitoring program while at the same time minimizes the downtime in the process.

Hence, maintaining proper viscosity is important because it is an indicator of the status of the equipment and a measure of its operating life cycle. Whether it is a wrong lubricant being introduced into the equipment, or contamination due to water, or degradation due to issues in rotating parts, real-time and online viscosity monitoring can provide a "heads-up" view before a failure mode occurs. Proactive maintenance is prudent strategy in extending the equipment life and reducing downtime. Having access to real-time and on-line viscosity data allows monitoring changes as a function of the condition of the equipment and duty cycles eliminating the need to make decisions based on intermittent, "snapshot" data acquired from periodic sampling.

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Source: BiODE