Speed reducers, commonly referred to as “Gearboxes,” are used in a variety of applications. Each application exposes the gearboxes to an array of loading and ambient conditions that directly affect the usable life. In order to prevent costly downtime or catastrophic failure of a gearbox, the industry has evolved to adopt condition monitoring as a mechanism for predictive maintenance.
Condition monitoring provides both historical and current performance data of gearbox condition, thus providing a highly confident inference on the gearbox’s remaining usable life (RUL). Condition monitoring can guide predictive maintenance activities.
There are several techniques that can provide a status of how the gearbox is performing. These techniques include temperature, vibration, noise, and used oil analysis. While all techniques can be considered useful to check the condition of the gearbox, one thing is certain for all techniques: it is all about trending.
This paper will explain how used oil analysis can help determine the condition of a gearbox by learning the most important factors for used oil analysis, how to interpret the results of a used oil analysis report and how trending can help schedule predictive maintenance actions.
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