Current Topics

How to Read an Alignment Report Part 2 – Thermal Growth Targets

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By on January 23, 2019

The goal of a precision alignment is to align the machine within tolerance when at operating condition. Many, but not all, machines are aligned without the need to compensate for offline to running (OL2R) movement most often associated with thermal growth. A previous blog post (see link below) discussed how to read an alignment report […]

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Low Cost Thermal Diagnoses Misalignment Machinery Health

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By on June 29, 2016

With the availability and decreasing prices of technology to help diagnose rotating machinery health, machine failure should be a diminishing concern. Thermal imaging cameras can be expensive; however, these cameras have very detailed diagnostic abilities and high resolution. Reduced cost Thermal Imaging has recently become available through various sources. I recently purchased an infrared camera […]

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Using the AlignHot App (Hot Check) to Determine Thermal Growth Targets

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By on July 23, 2015

A previous blog of mine discussed the benefit of taking a set of hot alignment readings to verify if the offset targets used for a cold alignment, to compensate for thermal growth (dynamic movement), were correct.  http://thealignmentblog.com/blog/2015/04/15/benefit-hot-alignment-check/ So what if the actual hot alignment readings you get show a large difference from the anticipated hot […]

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Understanding Alignment Target Data from the VibrAlign ThermAlign App

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By on May 13, 2015

Dynamic Movement, often thought of as thermal growth, is a hot topic among alignment professionals (I’ll be here all week!). Plant Services Magazine in conjunction with VibrAlign recently hosted a webinar on this subject (details below). One of the more popular ways to compensate for thermal growth is through the use of a thermal growth […]

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Shaft Alignment Thermal Growth Targets–When You Don’t Know

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By on September 23, 2012

In shaft alignment, machines that run hot often have thermal growth targets. Thermal targeting simply means that the shafts may be misaligned while at room temperature, but as they heat up to operating temperature, they will “grow” into alignment. But where does the thermal growth target come from? Many times, the machine manufacturer will specify […]

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Measuring Thermal Growth Targets using the XA Pro w/OL2R

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By on March 15, 2012

Previous blogs have defined thermal growth of rotating equipment and discussed several different methods to calculate the cold (ambient) alignment targets to compensate for thermal growth. The OL2R program (Off Line to Running) of the Fixturlaser XA Pro allows the aligner to easily measure thermal growth (dynamic movement) and determine the correct cold alignment targets for […]

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Should Thermal Growth Affect Angular Misalignment?

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By on January 17, 2012

In my post “How Does Calculating Your Own Alignment Targets Work?”, I discussed using a hot check to determine proper alignment targets. Thermal growth is not rocket science. However, it is often misunderstood. I see people causing harm by compensating for thermal growth incorrectly. Let’s look at a simple blower illustration: If we assume that […]

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Checking Your Thermal Targets

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By on December 21, 2011

Any equipment that goes through large temperature differences between startup and normal operation should have accurate thermal targets calculated to allow for proper shaft alignment. Shaft alignment data can be taken when the machine is at operating temperature and compared to readings taken when the machine is at ambient temperature. The resulting calculations provide alignment […]

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Thermal Growth-What’s So Hot About It?

By on November 6, 2011

Engineering and technical people often use technical phrases that sound complicated. Thermal growth is one of those terms. It sounds like it could be an engineering marvel – one that would help us perform complicated alignments of high temperature, high speed machines. So, here’s the “secret” of thermal growth. When metal gets hotter, it gets […]

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Thermal Growth Compensation – Growth Versus Targets

By on October 25, 2011

The object of precision shaft alignment is to position machines so that the rotational centers meet a specified tolerance at operating conditions. Machines can and will move due to temperature changes or process forces so this means that some machines need to be “misaligned” in their off line or cold condition so that they will […]

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Recycle, Recycle, Recycle

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By on June 17, 2020

  Often times customers ask the question how can we keep it going? “How can I continue to train my technicians with the principles they learned in your class?” Craftsmen and women often admit we don’t perform precision shaft alignments often enough to keep our skills current. To this I say recycle! One of the […]

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Compressors, Drivers and Alignment Considerations

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By on January 9, 2020

The two main types of compressors are dynamic and positive displacement. The positive displacement compressor is probably the one you’re most familiar with.  It traps gas in a volume and then decreases that volume.  The decrease in volume causes a rise in pressure. A dynamic compressor uses a rotating element (usually called an impeller) which […]

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Bearing Installation and Maintenance: What You Need to Know

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By on August 29, 2019

Bearings are essential to all rotating machinery. They are small but mighty–if bearings aren’t healthy, a machine will not function at optimum levels. In this post we provide you with some information and best practices for bearing installation and maintenance. Let’s start with the very basics–what are bearings? A bearing is a machine component that: […]

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Common Cutting Tools Used in Machine Shops

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By on August 6, 2019

Do you work in the machine tool industry? What kind of tools do you use on a daily basis? There are a lot of industry-specific terms and tools that it can seem daunting to be familiar with all the necessary tools and their functions. That’s why in this blog we wanted to lay out for […]

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Cooling Towers: Moving the Heat Away from Where it Isn’t Wanted

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By on May 14, 2019

Cooling towers and related components such as chilled water and condenser water pumps are another common type of data center equipment. On a basic level, cooling systems in data centers remove heat from one element and redirect it to another. A cooling tower is the depository for the excess heat given off by data center […]

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