Keep Your Machinery Performing Optimally: Static and Dynamic Balancing

Rotating machinery is omnipresent in industrial use and seen in different fields all across the spectrum. Rotational systems and components are critical to the overall efficiency of businesses in industries such as aerospace, energy storage, automotive, electronics, and medical devices to name a few.

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As the world continues to turn, industry experts rely more and more on rotating machinery to deliver fast, high-level and reliable results.

These sorts of turbomachinery include pumps, compressors, fans, blowers, bearings, engines, motors, and more. An essential to keeping these machine types in optimal condition is awareness and maintenance of its balance.

Understanding Unbalance

Unbalance is known to be one of the most common sources of failure in rotating components and is caused by an uneven distribution of mass around the axis of rotation.

When a system continues to rotate while unbalanced, it generates periodic forces perpendicular to the axis of rotation resulting in a vibration.

Static and Dynamic Balancing

This vibration becomes noisy and apparent as the severity of the unbalancing increases.

Often, such a defect can be mistaken for a simple machine repair or bearing replacement; however, if noise and vibration continue after repairs then the machine is likely signaling that it needs to be balanced.

If unbalance is detected in a rotational system, a balancing service is required to avoid structural defects and in extreme cases, catastrophic failure.

Imbalanced rotational parts can result in excess wear and tear along with structural cracks that could massively affect long-run costs.

A well-balanced turbomachine extends the bearing life and improves overall usage, quality, and accuracy of the machinery, which can be achieved through balancing services.

Static vs. Dynamic

Balancing services evaluate the components and provide a balance correction on materials like plastics or aerospace alloys. Based the type of machine or part, two balancing options can accurately restructure the assembly: Static and Dynamic.

  • Static Balancing is appropriate when an unbalance occurs at a single axial point on a disk-like rotor. In other words, the center of gravity of the object is on the axis of rotation allowing it to remain stationary with a horizontal axis and no braking force. The heavy point here is typically measured in relation to the component centerline.
  • Dynamic Balancing is appropriate for a dual plane unbalance with significant axial length and multi-rotor assemblies. In such a case, the rotation does not produce any resultant centrifugal force or couple and will rotate without application of an external force. Here, the two or more heavy points act independently on the mass centerline and unbalance must be corrected in two planes.

Balance Correction

Upon identifying the balancing service necessary, balance corrections can be done to bring rotational machines back to optimal performance levels. Balance corrections are mainly performed through material removal or mass addition at appropriate locations.

The most commonly used material removal methods are drilling/milling and abrasive material removal. Drills or milling equipment are used to control depth and arch of material removal.

For abrasive material removal, mass is removed through grinding or air-powered sanding equipment. Contrary to a removal process, a mass addition process can be implemented with epoxy, welding metal strips, or mechanical hardware.

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Experts in rotational test systems and services are available to assure your machine’s success. These professionals are equipped with quality tools and systems to work with customer specifications for unparallelled spin testing and balancing services that can deliver results for the machinery’s optimal performance.

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