Effective shaft alignment is a critical maintenance task as many types of machines depend on rotating shafts during operations. If these shafts are not properly aligned within machines, they will create friction between components and eventually cause failure. Proper shaft maintenance and alignment prevent this from occurring, and industrial training empowers employees to improve practices as needed.
Successful shaft alignment isn’t easy, and the wide range of emerging tools on the market highlights the diverse skill sets needed to complete alignment tasks properly.
New tools showcase complexity of shaft alignment
The methodology behind shaft alignment can vary a great deal depending on the type of tool being used, something that is evident in three recently released solutions:
The S-660 Wireless 3-Axis Shaft Alignment System: According to a release on Windpower Engineering & Development, the Hamar Laser S-660 Wireless 3-Axis Shaft alignment System uses dual laser fans to provide shaft alignment measurements and supports the hardware with a specialized software system designed to simplify the maintenance process.
The SFK TKSA 11: An Energy Global Oilfield Technology report explained that the TKSA 11 shaft alignment solution is designed with accessibility in mind, as it uses a mobile application combined with inductive proximity sensors to make it much easier to get an extremely accurate measurement of shaft alignment.
The Stealth-670: Also from Hamar Laser, the Stealth-670 shaft alignment tool is the only solution on the market that uses a single position sensing detector to improve accuracy and reduce error by as much as 50 percent, Windpower Engineering & Development reported.
The small distinctions between these productions, not to mention their quality, aside, the eye opener is how each uses slightly different technologies and techniques to accomplish the same thing – and these are just tools released in the past year.
Manufacturers must be prepared to train their staff in the diverse shaft alignment technologies on the market so they will understand the tools at their disposal and how best they can use the solution to prevent downtime.
Training the first step in shaft alignment success
The Energy Global Oilfield Technology report detailing the TKSA 11 tool explained that approximately 50 percent of machine failures can be caused by misaligned shafts.
The combination of diverse tool types and the importance of shaft maintenance come together to create an operational climate in which staff training is essential. Online learning courses can combine a variety of media types to provide detailed instruction on shaft alignment best practices, helping your workers understand what is expected of them as they use different techniques to maintain equipment.