What is thermographic testing and is it necessary?
As excess heat is often a symptom of a problem with equipment, thermographic testing is used to identify defective connections, deteriorated insulation, unbalanced loads and other issues with electrical components.
Monitoring equipment performance with thermal imaging cameras reduces the likelihood of unplanned downtime while reducing maintenance and repair costs and extending the lifespan of assets.
How does thermographic testing work?
Thermographic testing uses an infrared camera. The process detects and measures temperature differences based upon sensing the heat emitted from the surface of an object in the form of infrared radiation. Inspectors can easily identify heat anomalies by colours displayed in the resulting thermal image.
By identifying problems before they become significant or catastrophic, thermographic testing is an effective tool for troubleshooting and preventative maintenance.
Types of thermographic testing
Infrared thermography typically follows three processes. Which method is most appropriate depends upon the type of equipment being inspected.
Comparative thermographic testing measures the temperature of similar components under similar conditions. It compares the temperature results to determine the condition of the components.
Baseline thermography establishes a reference point from when the equipment was first installed or considered to be in good working order. The readings are then used in future inspections to compare with the baseline.
Trend thermography compares how heat is emitted by components over time. Often, trends from the baseline reading will be analysed. Thermal trend thermographic testing is particularly useful in identifying declining performance over time.
Is thermographic testing necessary?
There are many risks associated with electrical equipment failure, some of which can be very serious. In industry, nearly everything becomes hot before it fails, particularly where there is electricity involved.
Thermographic testing as part of planned maintenance programmes identifies hazards long before they cause problems. It enables real-time inspection of large areas, without interrupting the production process. Thermography compliments periodic fixed wire testing, reduces the potential for downtime and can extend life-cycles and even identify areas for energy savings.
Brooktech for thermographic testing services
Brooktech offers professional electrical services, including thermographic testing, in Manchester and the North West.
Contact us to find out how thermography can help your business save money and reduce safety risks.