Infrared thermography is equipment or method, which detects infrared energy emitted from object, converts it to temperature, and displays image of temperature distribution. To be accurate, the equipment and the method should be called differently, the equipment to be called as infrared thermograph and the method to be called as infrared thermography. Recently, however, more and more public literatures show tendency not to pay attention to such appellative. We call our equipment as infrared thermography considering such generalization of the terminology.
While infrared imaging systems are relatively simple to use, interpreting images taken with this equipment can be far more complex and challenging. With training and experience, however, remarkable information can be extracted from an infrared camera that can help asset managers and maintenance personnel alike better maintain systems and equipment while monitoring or improving the quality of products.
When it comes to inspecting mechanical equipment with infrared, certain conditions are needed. It is also important for the thermographer to have a strong foundation of basic radiometry and heat transfer, knowledge of how the mechanical equipment operates, as well as a solid background on the infrared camera’s capabilities and limitations. As with any type of technology, proper training is essential to successfully operate these systems.
Infrared Thermographic Testing is Powerful, Versatile, and Highly Accurate
Infrared thermographic testing is essentially a non-invasive, non-destructive inspection process that uses temperature sensing scanners. These infrared devices gather temperature signatures that lie beyond the range of visible light. Analysis of this data will help you detect a wide range of problems in building systems and structures, including moisture intrusion, missing or damaged insulation, overloaded circuits, faulty wiring, loose electrical connections, construction defects and storm damage.
Advantages of Thermography
- You get a visual picture
- So that you can compare temperatures over large area
- It is real time capable of catching moving targets
- Able to find deteriorating components prior to failure
- Measurement in areas inaccessible or hazardous
- Reduction of production losses due to unplanned
- Reduced maintenance and repair costs
- Increased equipment life
- Increased Mean-Time-Between-Failures (MTBF)
- Increased productivity and profitability
Thermographic Electrical Inspections
Electrical inspections can detect heated connections or components which may be indicative of a potentially major problem causing fire, injury, equipment damage, down time, etc. Thermography can find problems with faulty connections, overloaded circuits, faulty switches, phase imbalances, transformer issues, fuse problems, defective breakers, undersized connectors, insufficient cooling, etc. Many insurance companies now require annual inspections of critical equipment.
Mechanical inspections can detect elements of motors, compressors, bearings, belts, etc., under heat stress. Thermography is an invaluable part of any maintenance program. It is always better to repair items before failure causes operational interruptions and unexpected replacement costs.
Building Envelope Inspections
Building envelope inspections can detect problems with heat loss, air leakages, and water leakages. These are crucial for energy savings and occupant comfort.
The arrows illustrate window flashing leakage and masonry leakage.
Thermography can be used to inspect for..
- Roof and basement leaks
- Leaks behind a surface
- Thermal pane problems, (which often appear after the warranty period)
- Missing, damaged or improperly installed insulation
- Great for inspections on newer homes before the warranty period expires
- Plumbing leaks that are not yet visually detectable
- Electrical overheating from poor installation, overloading, etc.
- Exterior wall leaks
- Furnaces, air conditioners, fan motors
- Under floor heating systems, (water or electrical)
- Air leakages at walls, windows, doors, ducts, etc.
- Conditions in a home which could lead to mould growth And many others…
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