Industry – Thermoplastics
Machine – Chiller
Fault Type – Operation Issue

Unexpected issues can arise at any time, even despite regular inspection and scheduled maintenance with an experienced OEM technician. In this Win-of-the-Week, see how Augury AI detected a performance abnormality for a chiller pump following a seemingly typical maintenance event.

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Machine Health status, alerts, and communications between Augury vibration analysts and the onsite team are tracked and logged in the Augury platform as issues are detected and addressed.

In mid-April, Augury’s AI detected an anomaly — a major increase in vibration of the pump, indicating cavitation — after an OEM service technician drained the evaporator and condenser section of a chiller for regularly scheduled maintenance. Augury’s vibration analyst notified the customer, who found and reported that the air vent was bleeding off a large amount of water/vapor after the tube brushing. Both the customer and the vibration analyst agreed to monitor the chiller’s performance until after maintenance was completed.

One week after the maintenance event, Augury’s AI continued to detect performance issues. The vane pass was still too high, resulting in the chiller pumping either too much water or too little water. Augury’s vibration analyst alerted the customer of the ongoing abnormalities and suggested switching to a standby pump to see if the problem persisted. Meanwhile the customer contacted their OEM technician with Augury’s findings and requested an appointment to review the pump’s performance.

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Augury’s algorithms analyze over 840 unique feature sets. Changes in Vibration Velocity RMS at time of the alert are shown below.

During the technician’s second visit in early May, it was discovered that air had entered the condensing loop during maintenance. Once the technician had bled off a significant amount of air and adjusted the system to increase pump suction pressure, the system operated as expected and vibration readings returned to normal levels.

Even though the chiller appeared to be operating normally, Augury’s technology recognized the system problem. Working together, the vibration analyst and reliability engineer could immediately relate the issue back to the maintenance event because it persisted. The customer didn’t lose time waiting until the next monthly route, but instead could address the problem right away, avoiding potential downtime and expensive repairs to the pump later on. The Augury platform enabled ongoing communication and feedback between the customer and the Augury team about the machine status and repairs, while also creating a full auditable history for the asset.