Most industrial vibration sensors measure vibration in a single axis. Although this is an effective solution in many applications, such as when monitoring wear, imbalance or misalignment in motors, fans or pumps, it can be a challenge when more complex measurements are required in multiple axes.
One option of course is to install multiple accelerometers, one for each of the axes that need to be monitored. This can, however, be a complicated approach, as the outputs from each sensor will then need to be combined in phase to produce a meaningful assessment of the conditions of the machine being monitored. Clearly, the more complex the analysis of data, the greater the risk of error. Additionally, if space is restricted, then fitting three separate units may be impractical.
A more effective option is to use specialized triaxial accelerometers, which are compact and lightweight and are capable of simultaneously measuring vibration in two or three axes, providing a single integrated output for quick and accurate phase analysis.
Devices such as these typically have an operating sensitivity of 100mV/g, a transverse sensitivity of less than 5 percent and excellent frequency response of 6 Hz to 6 kHz. Although they need to be installed and mounted with care – in exactly the same way as all industrial accelerometers – to ensure that results are accurate and consistent, they offer an ideal solution for applications where multi-axis vibration measurement is required.
About the Author
Chris HansfordManaging Director, Hansford Sensors
Chris Hansford is a qualified electromechanical engineer with over 30 years’ experience in the vibration monitoring industry. In 1986, he was involved in the formation of a sensor manufacturing company and, as Managing Director for 20 years, successfully grew the business and gained a wealth of commercial experience within the UK market. In 2006, Chris moved on to set-up Hansford Sensors Ltd, a manufacturer of accelerometers and ancillary equipment that has already become a global market leader. Learn more about Hansford Sensors: http://www.hansfordsensors.com