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Shaft alignment with laser instrumentation

Shaft alignment is a vital part of the routine maintenance works of rotating machinery, since it has been shown that almost 50% of all machine failures are caused by misalignments. The alignment of the shaft can be done with different tools such as calipers, straightedges or laser systems.  Out of those methods, laser alignment is definitely the simplest and more accurate one.

There are many symptoms that can indicate shaft misalignment:

  • Early failures of bearings, seals, shafts or couplings
  • Excessive radial and axial vibrations
  • High temperature of the joint and bearing supports
  • Excessive oil losses from the bearing seals
  • Loosening of foundation bolts
  • Loosening or break of the joint bolts
  • Excessive amount of grease inside the joints
  • Cracks on the shafts in correspondence of the bearings

Misalignment has a severe impact on energy consumption: documented cases have shown energy savings ranging from 2 to 17% after correcting alignment problems. In addition to this, the advantages of a good alignment are the reduction of the overall maintenance costs and the increase in the plant’s operation safety.
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