Vibration measurement: rapidly increasing bearing damage

The condensate pump of a turbine showed bearing damage during a route measurement.

This case emphasizes the importance of extra attention as soon as limited damage starts

to show.

Observation during route measurement:


We can see a sudden increase in bearing fault frequencies. The measured damage is still in an early

stage. In the short term no actions need to be taken.


The pump will be monitored further in two weeks’ time.

Observation during follow-up measurement (2 weeks):

2 weeks ago, during route B vibration measurements, we noticed early bearing damage in the pump.

We suggested to monitor the motor-pump combination.


The graph shows a strong increase of the vibration level after a short period of time. There is a strong evolution in the vibration level with fault frequencies on the inner ring.


In view of the strong increase of the bearing damage in a relatively short period of time, it is advisable to overhaul the pump.

Damage analysis:

The pump was immediately overhauled. The following pictures show the damage.



This case teaches us the importance of close monitoring of damage. Monitoring the machine enables us to get a clearer picture of the evolution. The follow-up measurement made sure that the machine could be switched with the B machine (redundant operation).

This way production loss (outage of the turbine) and the resulting high costs were avoided.