Ultraprobe 3000
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Ultraprobe® 3000
Instruction Manual
Version 1
Ultraprobe 3000 ................................................................................................................................. 6
Basic Components .............................................................................................................................. 7
Plug-in modules scanning module ................................................................................................. 7
Stethoscope (contact) module ....................................................................................................... 7
Pistol-grip housing display panel.................................................................................................... 7
Trigger on/off trigger switch .......................................................................................................... 8
USB port ......................................................................................................................................... 8
Battery compartment..................................................................................................................... 8
Battery ............................................................................................................................................ 8
Wrist strap ...................................................................................................................................... 8
Sensitivity/storage entry control dial ............................................................................................. 8
Headphones jack ............................................................................................................................ 8
Standard accessories .......................................................................................................................... 9
DHC-2HH ........................................................................................................................................ 9
WTG-1 warble tone generator ....................................................................................................... 9
Rubber focusing probe ................................................................................................................... 9
Stethoscope extension kit .............................................................................................................. 9
Optional accessories .......................................................................................................................... 9
long range module LRM ................................................................................................................. 9
RAS-MT ........................................................................................................................................... 9
DHC 1991 ear piece ........................................................................................................................ 9
SA-2000 speaker amplifier ............................................................................................................. 9
UFMTG-1991 .................................................................................................................................. 9
WTG-2SP warble pipe threaded tone generator ......................................................................... 10
LLA ................................................................................................................................................ 10
Operation mode ............................................................................................................................... 10
Display panel ................................................................................................................................ 10
Bargraph display ........................................................................................................................... 10
Sensitivity control/storage entry dial To adjust the sensitivity.................................................... 10
Frequency ..................................................................................................................................... 11
To store a reading ........................................................................................................................ 11
To overwrite data or to enter data in a new location .................................................................. 11
To download the information ...................................................................................................... 11
Setup mode .................................................................................................................................. 12
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01 Send Records ........................................................................................................................... 12
02 Delete Records ........................................................................................................................ 12
Adjust Shutdown Time ................................................................................................................. 13
04 User Sense (Sensitivity) Defaults ............................................................................................. 13
05.Store Mode.............................................................................................................................. 14
06 Program Update ...................................................................................................................... 15
07 Exit (to operation mode) ......................................................................................................... 15
Users instructions............................................................................................................................. 15
Storing data .................................................................................................................................. 15
Scanning module .......................................................................................................................... 15
Method of airborne detection ..................................................................................................... 15
Headphones ................................................................................................................................. 15
Rubber focusing probe ................................................................................................................. 15
Stethoscope module .................................................................................................................... 16
Stethoscope extension kit ............................................................................................................ 16
Long range module....................................................................................................................... 16
RAS-MT ......................................................................................................................................... 16
TO CHARGE THE UP3000: ............................................................................................................. 17
WARBLE TONE GENERATOR (UE-WTG-1): ................................................................................... 17
TO CHARGE THE WARBLE TONE GENERATOR:............................................................................. 17
Ultraprobe applications ............................................................................................................... 18
1. Leak detection .......................................................................................................................... 18
How to locate leaks ...................................................................................................................... 19
B. To confirm a leak ...................................................................................................................... 19
C. Overcoming difficulties ............................................................................................................ 19
Shielding techniques .................................................................................................................... 20
D. Low level leaks ......................................................................................................................... 20
D. Tone test (Ultratone) ............................................................................................................... 21
Electric arc, corona, tracking detection ........................................................................................... 23
MONITORING BEARING WEAR ..................................................................................................... 24
Detecting Bearing Failure ............................................................................................................. 24
For Comparative Test ................................................................................................................... 25
Procedure for Bearing History (Historical) ................................................................................... 25
Lack of Lubrication ....................................................................................................................... 25
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Over Lubrication ........................................................................................................................... 25
To avoid over lubrication: ............................................................................................................ 25
SLOW SPEED BEARINGS ............................................................................................................... 25
FFT INTERFACE ............................................................................................................................. 26
General mechanical trouble shooting .............................................................................................. 26
Locating faulty steam traps .......................................................................................................... 27
General steam/condensate/flash steam confirmation ................................................................ 27
INVERTED BUCKET TRAPS ............................................................................................................ 28
A FLOAT AND THERMOSTATIC ..................................................................................................... 28
THERMODYNAMIC (DISC)............................................................................................................. 28
THERMOSTATIC TRAPS ................................................................................................................. 28
Locating faulty valves ................................................................................................................... 29
Procedure for valve check ............................................................................................................ 29
ABCD METHOD ............................................................................................................................. 30
CONFIRMING VALVE LEAKAGE IN NOISY PIPE SYSTEMS .............................................................. 30
MISCELLANEOUS PROBLEM AREAS .................................................................................................. 30
UNDERGROUND LEAKS ................................................................................................................ 30
LEAKAGE BEHIND WALLS ............................................................................................................. 31
PARTIAL BLOCKAGE: ..................................................................................................................... 31
FLOW DIRECTION ......................................................................................................................... 31
Ultrasound Technology .................................................................................................................... 32
Instructions for setting combination on carrying case ................................................................ 33
Specifications Ultraprobe® 3000....................................................................................................... 34
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Welcome to the wonderful world of airborne ultrasound
inspection
Congratulations, your digital Ultraprobe 3000 is full of highly advanced technical features that will
provide you with the ability to locate leaks, detect faulty steam traps, test bearings, store and
download your test data
Overview
Your Ultraprobe 3000 is a versatile instrument with many features that will make your inspections
easy, fast and accurate. As with any new instrument, it is important to review this manual before
you begin inspections.
While simple to use as a basic inspection tool, there are many powerful features that when
understood, will open up a world of opportunities for inspection and data analysis.
Ultrasound technology instruction scholarship certificate:
Your Ultraprobe 3000 has many applications ranging from leak detection to mechanical inspection
and may be used to trend, analyze or just find a problem. How it is used is up to you. As you gain
knowledge and learn how many modes of inspection you can cover, you might want to extend your
knowledge by enrolling in one of the many training courses offered by UE Training Systems, Inc. A
Scholarship certificate is available to you. Simply fill out the form found at the end of this manual
and mail or fax it in. The Ultraprobe 3000 is an ultrasonic inspection
Operation mode:
The operation mode will be described in detail under the operation mode section. In this mode you
will perform all inspection actions such as scanning, probing, “Click and Spin” activities, and store
data.
NOTE: “Click” operations require pressing a dial. “Spin” operations require turning a dial.
Set up mode:
The setup mode will be described in detail under the Set Up Mode section,. There are seven menu
options that will be described in that section.
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Ultraprobe 3000
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Basic Components
Plug-in modules scanning module
This module is utilized to receive air-borne ultrasound such as the ultrasounds emitted by
pressure/vacuum leaks and electrical discharges. There one male plug at the rear of the module.
For placement, align the plug with the corresponding receptacle in the front end of the pistol
housing and plug in. The Scanning Module has a piezoelectric transducer to pick up the airborne
ultrasound.
Stethoscope (contact) module
This is the module with the metal rod. This rod is utilized as a “waveguide” in that it is sensitive to
ultrasound that is generated internally such as within a pipe, bearing housing or steam trap. Once
stimulated by ultrasound, it transfers the signal to a piezoelectric transducer located in the module
housing directly behind the “wave guide”. For placement align the plug with the corresponding
receptacle in the front end of the pistol housing and plug in.
Pistol-grip housing display panel
In the Operation Mode the Display Panel will show intensity levels (as dB and as a bar graph),
Sensitivity Level, Storage location number, and Battery Level,. Intensity levels are shown
simultaneously as a numeric dB value and on sixteen-segmented bar graph (with each segment
representing 3 dB). This Ultraprobe receives ultrasound centered around 40 kHz and is nonadjustable.
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Display Panel
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Headphone Jack
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Sensitivity Control/ Storage Entry Dial
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Trigger on/off trigger switch
The Ultraprobe is always “off’ until the trigger switch is pressed. To operate, pull in and hold the
trigger. To turn the instrument off, release the trigger.
USB port
This port is used to download/transfer information from the Ultraprobe 3000 into the computer. It is
also used to charge the instrument. Before downloading data be sure the cable is connected to
both the USB port and to the computer. When charging, plug the recharger cable into the USB and
then into the electric receptacle.
Battery compartment
The Handle contains the rechargeable battery. Remove the battery only when it cannot hold a
charge and needs to be replaced. If the battery is to be changed, remove the cover and replace.
Battery
The battery is a rechargeable battery and is charged using the USB port. WARNING: ONLY USE
UE SYSTEMS BATTERY RECHARGER #BCH-3L. DO NOT USE UNAUTHORIZED BATTERIES
OR BATTERY RECHARGERS! Doing so may be hazardous and may damage the instrument and
will void the warranty. Recharging the battery takes about 1 hour; continuous Scanning Module
Stethoscope Module Headphone Jack Sensitivity Control/ Storage Entry Dial Display Panel run
time is about 2 hours. With normal operation (on-off between tests) the charge will last 4-6 hours.
On the BCH-3L BATTERY RECHARGER, when the light is red the battery is charging and when it
is green it is fully charged.
Wrist strap
To protect the instrument, against unexpected droppage use the wrist strap.
Sensitivity/storage entry control dial
This is the most important control in the unit. It is used to adjust the sensitivity. When clicked it
changes functions such as store data or change the storage location number. It is also used to get
into the “SET UP” mode (described later).
Headphones jack
This is where you plug in the headphones. Be sure to plug it in firmly until it clicks.
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Standard accessories
DHC-2HH
Headphone headset is for use with a hard hat. This heavy-duty headset is designed to block out
intense sounds often found in industrial environments so that the user may easily hear the sounds
received by the ULTRAPROBE. In fact, the headphones provide over 23 dB of noise attenuation.
WTG-1 warble tone generator
The WTG-1 Tone Generator is an ultrasonic transmitter designed to flood an area with ultrasound.
It is used for a special type of leak test. ‘When placed inside an empty container or on one side of a
test item, it will flood that area with an intense ultrasound that will not penetrate any solid but will
flow through any existing fault or void. By scanning with the Scanning Module, empty containers
such as pipes, tanks, windows, doors, bulkheads or hatches can be instantly checked for leakage.
This Tone Generator is a WARBLE TONE GENERATOR. This internationally patented transmitter
sweeps through a number of ultrasonic frequencies in a fraction of a second to produce a strong,
recognizable “Warble” signal. The warble tone prevents a standing wave condition, which can
produce false readings and provides for a consistency of testing in practically any material.
Rubber focusing probe
The Rubber Focusing Probe is a cone-shaped rubber shield. It is used to block out stray ultrasound
and to assist in focusing on the field of reception of the Scanning Module.
Stethoscope extension kit
This consists of three metal rods that will enable a user to reach up to 31 additional inches (78.7
cm) with the Stethoscope Probe.
Optional accessories
long range module LRM
This uniquely designed module doubles the detection distance of a standard scanning module and
provides a narrow (10º) sensing area making it ideally suited for locating ultrasonic emissions (such
as a leak or electrical emission) at a distance
RAS-MT
A magnetically mounted transducer and cable magnetically attaches to metal surfaces such as
valves, steam traps and bearings. The RAS-MT needs a RAM (Remote Access Module) to connect
to the Ultraprobe 3000. (See RAS-MT, page 17)
DHC 1991 ear piece
Ear piece eliminates the need for standard headphones.
SA-2000 speaker amplifier
The SA-2000 is a loud speaker and amplifier that is compatible with the Ultraprobe headphone
output jack. Exit and and a circular transmission patern of 360°.
UFMTG-1991
The UFMTG 1991 is a multi directional warble tone generator. It has a high power output with a
circular transmission pattern of 360º
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WTG-2SP warble pipe threaded tone generator
A Warble Tone Generator that is used in test conditions where it is not possible to physically place
the standard WTG-1 Warble Tone Generator, such as in pipes or in certain heat exchangers or
tanks. Features: 1” NPT male threaded nipple with adapters for ¾” and ½”
female nipple with a 10 turn amplitude adjustment dial. Metric adapters available.
LLA
Liquid Leak Amplifier is a special bubble solution that is used to detect extremely small leaks
(ranging from 1 x 10-3 to 1 x 10-6 std.cc/sec.) LLA produces small bubbles that form and then
collapse and produce strong ultrasonic signals. They collapse instantly so there is little or no
waiting time.
Operation mode
Display panel
When the trigger is pressed to turn the instrument on, the Display Panel will display the decibel and
bar graph intensity levels. The sensitivity level will be displayed in the upper left corner. The
storage location number will be shown in the upper right corner. The Battery Charge level is shown
in the mid-right side of the display.
Bargraph display
The bar graph has 16 segments. Each segment represents 3 decibels. At the end of the bar graph
is a vertical line, which indicates the maximum intensity. This is a maximum level hold function.
When in operation, the bar graph will move up and down the scale as an indication of the amplitude
of a sensed ultrasound. The maximum level indicator will remain at the highest sensed intensity
during a particular inspection until a new maximum reading is detected, or The trigger is released
and the instrument is turned off. At which time it will reset.
Sensitivity Level
Storage Location
S=70
2
16dB
Battery Level
Bargraph & Maximum Level Indicator
Sensitivity control/storage entry dial To adjust the sensitivity
•
Look at the display and note the “S=” value. If the instrument is within range, a dB (decibel )
value will be displayed.
• The maximum sensitivity value is 70; the minimum is 0.
• To reduce the sensitivity/volume, rotate the dial counter clockwise. To increase the
sensitivity, rotate the dial clockwise. The Sensitivity control dial increases/decreases the
sensitivity of the instrument simultaneously with the sound level in the headphones.
NOTE: the instrument needs to be in range for accurate testing.
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If the sensitivity is too low, a blinking arrow pointing to the right will appear and there will be
no numeric decibel visible in the display panel. If this occurs, increase the sensitivity until the
arrow disappears (in low level sound environments the arrow will blink continuously and It
will not be possible to achieve a dB indication until a higher intensity level is sensed).
If the sensitivity is too high, a blinking arrow pointing to the left will appear and there will be
no numeric decibel visible on the display panel. Reduce the sensitivity until the arrow
disappears and the numeric decibel value is shown.
NOTE: The blinking arrow indicates the direction in which the Sensitivity Control Dial is to be turned
when out of range.
•
The Sensitivity Control Dial controls the bar graph display.
Frequency
This instrument is set to the peak frequency response of the transducers which is 40 kHz. It is nonadjustable.
To store a reading
There are 2 types of storage modes: Normal and Quick. For “Normal” Storage
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Firmly “Click”(press in) the Sensitivity Dial. The Storage location will blink and the phrase
SPIN/ CLICK will appear on the bottom of the display panel.
If you wish to use a storage location other than the one shown, “spin” the Sensitivity dial up
(clockwise) or down (counter clockwise) to the desired location.
If the Storage Location is the one you chose to use, click the Sensitivity Dial again and you
will see a prompt on the bottom of the display panel: STORE? YES . If you want to store the
data, “click” the Sensitivity Dial once more and the record is stored at the set location. The
Storage Location number will automatically move up to the next sequential number.
If you chose not to store the record, “spin” the Sensitivity Dial and you will see the word NO,
“click” the Sensitivity Dial and you will return to the operation mode.
For Quick Store (see Set Up Mode, “Menu 05; Store Mode”)
When in the Quick Store mode, “click (press in) the Sensitivity Dial once and the record is
stored. The Storage Location number will automatically move up to the next sequential
number.
To overwrite data or to enter data in a new location
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Click (press in) the Sensitivity dial button; the Storage Location number will blink.
Spin the Sensitivity Dial until the desired storage location is displayed on the screen
Click the Sensitivity Dial again and the prompt STORE YES? Will appear.
To store the new information in that location, “click” the Sensitivity Dial again and the record
will be over written.
To download the information
•
Refer to Setup Mode, 01 Send Records
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Setup mode
To enter the Set Up Mode:
1. Make sure the Ultraprobe is off.
2. Click (Press) the Sensitivity dial and hold it in. while you pull/squeeze the trigger. Hold both
the Sensitivity Dial and Trigger in until the screen displays: “ Menu 01; Send Records”.
NOTE: Hold the Trigger in during any of the Set Up Mode operations or the instrument will turn off.
3. Once Menu 01 is displayed, you may move to any of the other Menu Modes by spinning the
Sensitivity Dial up or down (clockwise or counter clockwise).
4. When the desired Menu Mode is reached, click (push) the Sensitivity Control in to enter/use
that menu function.
5. You may spin to enter and exit any Menu mode in the Set Up mode as long as the trigger is
squeezed to keep the instrument on.
01 Send Records
NOTE: Before downloading data, be sure the Ultraprobe is connected to the computer via the
USB cable.
To send data from the Ultraprobe to your computer:
1. Make sure the Ultraprobe is off.
2. Click (Press) the Sensitivity dial and hold it in. while you pull/squeeze the trigger. Hold both
the Sensitivity Dial and Trigger in until the screen displays: “ Menu 01; Send Records”.
NOTE: Hold the Trigger in during any of the Set Up Mode operations or the instrument will turn off.
3. When Menu 01, Send Data is shown, “click” the Sensitivity Control Dial and all the data will
be transferred to the computer.
NOTE: For software management, refer to Ultratrend DMS Instructions.)
Menu 01
Send Data
02 Delete Records
To clear all records in preparation for your next route, you need to Delete Records.
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3.
4.
5.
Enter Setup Mode…be sure to continue to hold the Trigger in.
Spin clockwise to Menu 02, Delete Records
You will see a prompt: Delete Records Confirm?
To exit, select NO
To Delete, spin the Sensitivity Dial to YES and “click”(press) the Sensitivity dial
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Adjust Shutdown Time
The shutdown time allows you to select the time it will take to turn the instrument off once the
trigger is released. You may select from 1, 5, 30, 60, and 300 seconds.
1. Enter Setup Mode…be sure to continue to hold the Trigger in.
2. Spin to Menu 03 Adjust Shutdown Time
3. “Click” (press) the Sensitivity Dial in to enter
4. The Spin to the desired turn off time
5. Click to exit
Menu 03
Adjust Shutdown Time
Menu 03
Adjust Shutdown Time
1 sec.
Click Spin
Menu 03
Adjust Shutdown Time
Click
04 User Sense (Sensitivity) Defaults
With experience a user will know which sensitivity level to use as the highest level. This mode
allows the user to adjust the default starting sensitivity level for inspection routes.
To set the Sensitivity Default:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Enter Setup Mode be sure to continue to hold the Trigger in.
Spin to Menu 04 User Sense Defaults
“Click” the Sensitivity Dial to Enter
Spin to the desired level (70 to 00, 70 is highest 00 is the lowest)
“Click” to set
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05.Store Mode
There are two store mode selections: Normal and Quick.
In the Normal store mode the store procedure includes three ”Clicks” of the Sensitivity dial. 1. The
first click enters the Storage Mode where the user can spin to a different record location or stay in
the current location. 2 The second click allows the user to accept or decline the Store operation. 3.
The third click exits the Store Mode to the Main Screen. The Quick mode requires one “click” to
store the data. Every time you store data, the instrument will move up one record to the next
storage location.
To select Store Mode:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Enter Setup Mode be sure to continue to hold the Trigger in.
Spin to Menu 05 Store Mode
“Click” the Sensitivity Dial to Enter
A prompt will blink NORMAL or QUICK
To change, “spin” the Sensitivity Dial
To select either Normal or Quick, when the desired mode is blinking, “click” the Sensitivity
Dial
Menu 05
Store Mode
Store Mode
NORMAL
Click
Store Mode
QUICK
Spin
Menu 05
Store Mode
Click
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06 Program Update
Whenever the operating system software is changed, the program can be downloaded off the UE
Systems web site: www.uesystems.com. Upon receiving notice, Download the program to your
computer and follow the procedure supplied by UE Systems.
CAUTION: Failure to follow the “Program Update” procedure may prevent the UP3000 from
programming properly and result in the instrument being shipped back to UE Systems for repair.
07 Exit (to operation mode)
Click the Sensitivity Control dial and you will exit to Operation Mode.
Users instructions
Storing data
Storing data can be performed with either the Normal or Quick store modes. (see Setup Menu 05
Store Data) To Store Data in the NORMAL STORE MODE:
1. “Click” the Sensitivity Dial to Enter storage mode
2. The Display Screen will show: Storage Location #, Current dB level and a prompt:
STORE/CLICK
3. The Storage Location will blink. You can use this current location or change it. To change the
location “Spin” the Sensitivity Dial to the desired location.
4. “Click” the Sensitivity Dial and the Storage Location will stop blinking. You will see a prompt:
STORE? YES
5. To store, “click” the Sensitivity Dial and the data will be stored.
6. If you do not wish to store the data, “spin” the Sensitivity Dial to NO and “click” to exit.
Scanning module
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Plug in to front end.
Align the plug located at the rear of the module with the receptacle in the front end of the
Pistol Housing and plug in.
Start to scan the test area.
Method of airborne detection
The method of air borne detection is to go from the “gross to the fine”. Start off at a high sensitivity
level and if there is too much ultrasound in the area, reduce the sensitivity, following the sound to
the loudest point. If necessary, place the RUBBER FOCUSING PROBE (described below) over the
scanning module and proceed to follow the test sound to its’ loudest point constantly reducing the
sensitivity while following the bargraph indicator on the display.
Headphones
To use, firmly plug the headphone jack into the “Phones” receptacle on the pistol housing, and
place the headphones over your ears.
Rubber focusing probe
The Rubber Focusing probe fills two functions: it deflects stray ultrasounds and enhances the
reception of weak airborne signals. To use, simply slip it over the front of the scanning module or
the contact module
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NOTE: To prevent damage to the module plug, always remove the module BEFORE attaching
and/or removing the Rubber focusing Probe.
Stethoscope module
• The metal rod acts as a wave-guide, directing structure borne ultrasounds directly to the
receiving transducer with little impedance.
• Align the plug located at the rear of the module with the receptacle in the front end of the
Pistol Housing and plug in.
• Touch test area.
As with the scanning module, go from the “gross” to the “fine”. Start a maximum sensitivity on the
Sensitivity Dial and proceed to reduce the sensitivity until a satisfactory sound level is achieved.
Stethoscope extension kit
1. Remove the Stethoscope Module from the Metered Pistol Housing.
2. Unscrew the metal rod in the Stethoscope Module.
3. Look at the thread of the rod you just unscrewed and locate a rod in the kit that has the same
size thread - this is the “base piece”.
4. Screw the Base Piece into the Stethoscope Module.
5. If all 78cm are to be utilized, locate the middle piece. (This is the rod with a female fitting at
one end) and screw this piece into the base piece.
6. Screw third “end piece” into middle piece.
7. If a shorter length is desired, omit step 5 and screw “end piece” into “base piece”.
Long range module
• Plug in to front end.
• Align the plug located at the rear of the module with the receptacle in the front end of the
Pistol Housing and plug in.
• Start to scan the test area.
RAS-MT
The magnetically mounted transducer acts as a wave guide. The cable attaches to the RAM
(Remote Access Module) which is plugged into the pistol grip housing.
•
•
•
Make sure RAS-MT cable is attached to the RAM
Plug RAM into the front end.
Place the magnet transducer on the test point
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TO CHARGE THE UP3000:
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The recharger has a 5-pin mini USB plug that connects to the 5-pin mini USB jack on the
Ultraprobe.
Plug the recharger into an electric outlet and then place the 5-pin mini USB plug into the 5pin mini USB jack on Ultraprobe 3000.
The LED on the charger will be red when charging and then turn green when fully charged.
Charging will take about one hour.
Remove the charger from the electric outlet when fully charged
WARNING: Use the supplied UE Systems recharger only. Use of unauthorized rechargers will void
the warranty and may damage the battery and or instrument.
WARBLE TONE GENERATOR (UE-WTG-1):
Turn Tone Generator on by selecting either "LOW" for a low amplitude signal (usually
recommended for small containers) or "HIGH" for high amplitude. In high, the Warble Tone
Generator will cover up to 4,000 cubic feet (121.9 cu. meters) of unobstructed space.
When the Tone Generator is on, a red light (located below the recharge jack in the front) flickers.
Place the Warble Tone Generator within the test item/container and seal or close it. Then scan the
suspect areas with the Scanning Module in the Ultraprobe and listen for where the "warble"
ultrasound penetrates .As an example, if the item to be tested is the seal around a window place
the Warble Tone Generator on one side of the window, close it and proceed to scan on the
opposite side.
To test the condition of the Warble Tone Generator battery, set to the LOW INTENSITY position
and listen to the sound through the Ultraprobe at 40 kHz. A continuous warbling sound should be
heard. If a "beeping" is heard instead, then a full recharge of the
Warble Tone Generator is indicated.
TO CHARGE THE WARBLE TONE GENERATOR:
Plug recharger cable into recharger jack on the Warble Tone Generator and then plug the
recharger into an electric outlet. Make sure that the LED on the charger is lit when recharging.
The LED turns OFF when the battery is charged.
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Ultraprobe applications
1. Leak detection
This section will cover airborne leak detection of pressure and vacuum systems. (For information
concerned with internal leaks such as in Valves and Steam Traps, refer to the appropriate
sections).
What produces ultrasound in a leak? When a gas passes through a restricted orifice under
pressure, it is going from a pressurized laminar flow to low pressure turbulent flow (Fig. 1). The
turbulence generates a broad spectrum of sound called "white noise". There are ultrasonic
components in this white noise. Since the ultrasound will be loudest by the leak site, the detection
of these signals is usually quite simple.
Figure 1: Pressure Leak
Figure 2: Vacuum Leak
A leak can be in a pressurized system or in a vacuum system. In both instances, the ultrasound will
be produced in the manner described above.
The only difference between the two is that a vacuum leak will usually generate less ultrasonic
amplitude than a pressure leak of the same flow rate. The reason for this is that the turbulence
produced by a vacuum leak is occurring within the vacuum chamber while the turbulence of a
pressure leak is generated in the atmosphere (Fig.2).
What type of gas leak will be detected ultrasonically? Generally any gas, including air, will produce
a turbulence when it escapes through a restricted orifice. Unlike gas specific sensors, the
Ultraprobe is sound specific. A gas specific sensor is limited to the particular gas it was designed to
sense (e.g., helium). The Ultraprobe can sense any type of gas leak since it detects the ultrasound
produced by the turbulence of a leak. because of its versatility, the Ultraprobe may be utilized in a
wide variety of leak detection. Pneumatic systems may be checked, pressurized cables, such as
those utilized by telephone companies, may be tested. Air brake systems on railroad cars, trucks,
and buses may be checked. Tanks, pipes, housings, casings and tubes are easily tested for
leakage by pressurizing them. Vacuum systems, turbine exhausts, vacuum chambers, material
handling systems, condensers, oxygen systems can all easily be tested for leakage by listening for
the turbulence of the leak.
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How to locate leaks
1. Use the SCANNING MODULE.
2. Start off with the sensitivity selection at 0 (Maximum).
3. Begin to scan by pointing the module towards the test area. The procedure is to go from the
"gross" to the "fine" more and more subtle adjustments will be made as the leak is
approached.
4. If there is too much ultrasound in the area, reduce the sensitivity setting and continue to
scan.
5. If it is difficult to isolate the leak due to competing ultrasound, place the RUBBER
FOCUSING PROBE over the scanning module and proceed to scan the test area.
6. Listen for a "rushing" sound while observing the meter.
7. Follow the sound to the loudest point. The meter will show a higher reading as the leak is
approached.
8. In order to focus in on the leak, keep reducing the sensitivity setting and move the instrument
closer to the suspected leak site until you are able to confirm a leak.
B. To confirm a leak
Position the Scanning Module, or the rubber focusing probe (if it is on the scanning module) close
to the suspect leak site and move it, slightly, back and forth, in all directions. If the leak is at this
location, the sound will increase and decrease in intensity as you sweep over it. In some instances,
it is useful to position the rubber focusing probe directly over the suspect leak site and push down
to "seal" it from surrounding sounds. If it is the leak, the rushing sound will continue. If it is not the
leak site, the sound will drop off.
C. Overcoming difficulties
Competing Ultrasounds If competing ultrasounds make it difficult to isolate a leak, there are two
approaches to be taken:
a. Manipulate the environment. This procedure is fairly straight forward. When possible, turn off
the equipment that is producing the competing ultrasound or isolate the area by closing a
door or window.
b. Manipulate the instrument and use shielding techniques. If environmental manipulation is not
possible, try to get as close to the test site as possible, and manipulate the instrument so
that it is pointing away from the competing ultrasound. Isolate the leak area by reducing the
sensitivity of the unit and by pushing the tip of the rubber focusing probe up to the test area,
checking a small section at a time.
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Shielding techniques
Since ultrasound is a high frequency, short wave signal, it can usually be blocked or "shielded".
NOTE: When using any method, be sure to follow your plant's or company's safety guidelines.
Some common techniques are:
a. Body: Place your body between the test area and the competing sounds to act as a barrier
b. Clip Board: Position the clip board close to the leak area and angle it so that it acts as a
barrier between the test area and the competing sounds
c. Gloved Hand: (USE CAUTION) using a gloved hand, wrap the hand around the rubber
focusing probe tip so that the index finger and the thumb are close to the very end and place
the rest of the hand on the test site so that there is a complete barrier of the hand between
the test area and the background noise. Move the hand and instrument together over the
various test zones.
d. Wipe rag: This is the same method as the "gloved hand" method, only, in addition to the
glove, use a wipe rag to wrap around the rubber focusing probe tip. Hold the rag in the
gloved hand so that it acts as a "curtain", i.e., there is enough material to cover the test site
without blocking the open end of the rubber focusing probe. This is usually the most effective
method since it uses three barriers: the rubber focusing probe, the gloved hand and the rag.
e. Barrier: When covering a large area, it is some-times helpful to use some reflective material,
such as a welders curtain or a drop cloth, to act as a barrier. Place the material so that it acts
as a "wall" between the test area and the competing sounds. Sometimes the barrier is
draped from ceiling to floor, at other times, it is hung over railings.
D. Low level leaks
In ultrasonic inspection of leakage, the amplitude of the sound often depends upon the amount of
turbulence generated at the leak site. The greater the turbulence, the louder the signal, the less the
turbulence, the lower the intensity of the signal. When a leak rate is so low that it produces little, if
any turbulence that is "detectable", it is considered "below threshold". If a leak appears to be of this
nature:
1. Build up the pressure (if possible) to create greater turbulence.
2. Utilize LIQUID LEAK AMPLIFIER. This patented method incorporates a UE Systems product
called LIQUID LEAK AMPLIFIER, or LLA for short. LLA is a uniquely formulated liquid
substance that has special chemical proper-ties. Used as an ultrasonic "bubble test, a small
amount of LLA is poured over a suspected leak site. It produces a thin film through which the
escaping gas will pass. When it comes in contact with a low flow of gas, it quickly forms a
large number of small "soda-like" bubbles that burst as soon as they form. This bursting
effect produces an ultrasonic shock wave that is heard as a crackling sound in the
headphones. In many instances the bubbles will not be seen, but they will be heard. This
method is capable of obtaining successful leak checks in systems with leaks as low as 1x106 ml/sec. The Tone Generator on one side pointing in the direction of the area to be tested)
and close, or seal so that the Tone Generator is enclosed within.
NOTE: The low surface tension of the LLA is the reason small bubbles form. This can be
negatively changed by contamination of the leak site with another leak fluid which can block LLA or
cause large bubbles to form. If contaminated, clean the leak site with water, solvent or alcohol
(check with plant regulations before selecting a decontaminating cleaning agent).
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Use the UE-CFM-3 Close Focus Module. Specifically designed for low level leaks, the unique
scanning chamber is designed to receive low level signals with reduced signal distortion and
provides easier recognition of a low level leak. For more information, call the factory.
D. Tone test (Ultratone)
The Tone Test is an ultrasonic method for non-destructive testing which is used when it is difficult
to pressurize or draw a vacuum in a system. This ultrasonic test is applicable to a wide range of
items, including: CONTAINERS, TUBES, PIPES, HEAT EXCHANGERS, WELDS, GASKETS,
SEALS, DOORS, WINDOWS, OR HATCHES.
The test is conducted by placing an ultrasonic transmitter, called TONE GENERATOR, inside (or
on one side) of the test item. The warble pulse signal from the TONE GENERATOR will instantly
„flood“ the test item and penetrate any existing leak hole. Depending on configuration and material,
even thin spots in certain metals can be vibrated by the signal. By scanning for sonic penetration
on the exterior surface (or opposite side) of the test item with the Ultraprobe, the leak will be
detected. It will be heard as a high pitched warble, similar to bird chirping. The Tone Test
incorporates two basic components: a TONE GENERATOR (an ultrasonic transmitter) , and the
Trisonic Scanning Module in the Ultraprobe.
To conduct the test:
1.
2.
Make certain the test item has no fluids or contaminants such as water, mud, sludge, etc.,
that can block the path of the transmitted ultrasound.
Place the Tone Generator within the container, (if it is a room, door or window to be tested,
place the Tone Generator on one side pointing in the direction of the area to be tested) and
close, or seal so that the Tone Generator is enclosed within.
NOTE: The size of the test area will determine the amplitude selection of the Tone Generator. If
the item to be tested is small, select the LOW position. For larger items, use the HIGH position.
3.
Scan the test area with the Ultraprobe as outlined in LEAK DETECTION procedure. (i.e.,
start with the sensitivity selection at 8 and proceed down).
When positioning the Tone Generator, place the transducer facing and close to the most crucial
test area. If a general area is to be checked, position the Tone Generator so that it will cover as
wide an area as possible by placing it in the "middle" of the test item.
How far will the sound travel? The Tone Genera-tor is designed to cover approximately 113m³
(4000 cubic feet) of uninterrupted space. This is slightly larger than the size of a tractor trailer.
Placement is dependent upon such variables as the size of the leak to be tested, the thickness of
the test wall and the type of material tested (i.e. is it sound absorbant or sound reflective?).
Remember, you are dealing with a high frequency, short wave signal. If the sound is expected to
travel through a thick wall, place the Tone Generator close to the test zone, if it is a thin metallic
wall, move it farther back and use "low". For uneven surfaces it may be necessary to use two
people. One person will move the Tone Generator slowly close to and around the test areas while
another person scans with the Ultraprobe on the other side.
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Do not use the Tone test in a complete vacuum.
Ultrasound will not travel in a vacuum. Sound waves need molecules to vibrate and conduct the
signal. There are no moveable molecules in a complete vacuum.
If a partial vacuum is to be drawn where there are still some air molecules to vibrate, then the Tone
Test may be implemented successfully. In a laboratory, a form of the Tone Test is utilized in seal
leaks of an electron beam microscope. The test chamber has been fitted with a specially designed
transducer to emit the desired tone and a partial vacuum is created. A user then scans all seams
for sonic penetration. The Tone Test has also been effectively utilized to test tanks before they are
put on line, piping, refrigerator gaskets, caulking around doors and windows for air infiltration
testing, heat exchangers for leaking tubes, as a Q.C. test for automobile wind noise and water
leaks, on aircraft to test for problems associated with cabin pressure leaks and glove boxes for seal
integrity defects.
Optional Pipe Threaded
Tone Generator
UE-WTG2SP
Version 1
Electric arc, corona, tracking detection
There are three basic electrical problems that are detected with the Ultraprobe 3000:
Arcing: An arc occurs when electricity flows through space. Lightning is a good example.
Corona: When voltage on an electrical conductor, such as an antenna or high voltage transmission line exceeds the threshold value, the air around it begins to ionize to form a blue
or purple glow.
Tracking: Often refered to as "baby arcing", follows the path of damaged insulation.
Although theoretically the Ultraprobe 3000 can be used in low, medium and high voltage systems,
most of the applications tend to be in medium and high voltage systems.
When electricity escapes in high voltage lines or when it "jumps" across a gap in an electrical
connection, it disturbs the air molecules around it and generates ultrasound. Most often this sound
will be perceived as a crackling or "frying" sound, in other situations it will be heard as a buzzing
sound
Typical applications include: insulators, cable, switchgear, buss bars, relays, contactors, junction
boxes. In substations, components such as insulators, transformers and bushings may be tested.
Ultrasonic testing is often used at voltages exceeding 2,000 volts, especially in enclosed
switchgear. Since ultrasound emissions can be detected by scanning around door seams and air
vents, it is possible to detect serious faults such as arcing, tracking and corona without taking the
switchgear off line to perform an infrared scan. However, it is recommended that both tests be used
with en-closed switchgear.
NOTE: When testing electrical equipment, follow all your plant or company safety procedures.
When in doubt, ask your supervisor. Never touch live electrical apparatus with the Ultraprobe.
The method for detecting electric arc and corona leakage is similar to the procedure outlined in
leak detection.
Instead of listening for a rushing sound, a user will listen for a crackling or buzzing sound. In some
in-stances, as in trying to locate the source of radio/ TV interference or in substations, the general
area of disturbance may be located with a gross detector such as a transistor radio or a wide-band
interference locator. Once the general area has been located, the scanning module of the
Ultraprobe is utilized with a general scan of the area. The sensitivity is reduced if the signal is too
strong to follow. When this occurs, reduce the sensitivity to get a mid-line reading on the meter and
continue following the sound until the loudest point is located.
Determining whether a problem exists or not is relatively simple. By comparing sound quality and
sound levels among similar equipment, the problem sound will tend to be quite different.
On lower voltage systems, a quick scan of bus bars often will pick up a loose connection. Checking
junction boxes can reveal arcing. As with leak detection, the closer one gets to the emission site,
the louder the signal.
If power lines are to be inspected and the signal does not appear to be intense enough to be
detectable from the ground, use UE Systems LRM (Long Range Module) which will double the
detection distance of the Ultraprobe and provide pinpoint detection. This
is recommended for those situations in which it may be considered safer to inspect electrical
apparatus at a distance. The LRM is extremely directional and will locate the exact site of an
electrical discharge.
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MONITORING BEARING WEAR
Ultrasonic inspection and monitoring of bearings is by far the most reliable method for detecting
incipient bearing failure. The ultrasonic warning appears prior to a rise in temperature or an
increase in low frequency vibration levels. Ultrasonic inspection of bearings is useful in recognizing
all stages of bearing failure, including:
a. The beginning of fatigue failure.
b. Brinelling of bearing surfaces.
c. Flooding of or lack of lubricant.
In ball bearings, as the metal in the raceway, roller or ball bearing begins to fatigue, a subtle
deformation begins to occur. This deforming of the metal will produce irregular surfaces, which will
cause an increase in the emission of ultrasonic sound waves. A change in amplitude from the
original reading is an indication of incipient bearing failure. When a reading exceeds any previous
reading by 12 dB, it can be assumed that the bearing has entered the beginning of the failure
mode.
This information was originally discovered through experimentation performed by NASA on ball
bearings. In tests performed while monitoring bearings at frequencies ranging from 24 through 50
kHz, they found that the changes in amplitude indicate incipient (the onset of) bearing failure before
any other indicators including heat and vibration changes. An ultrasonic system based on detection
and analysis of modulations of bearing resonance frequencies can provide subtle detection
capability; whereas conventional methods are incapable of detecting very slight faults. As a ball
passes over a pit or fault in the race surface, it produces an impact. A structural resonance of one
of the bearing components vibrates or "rings" by this repetitive impact. The sound produced is
observed as an increase in amplitude in the monitored ultrasonic frequencies of the bearing.
Brinelling of bearing surfaces will produce a similar increase in amplitude due to the flattening
process as the balls get out of round. These flat spots also produce a repetitive ringing that is
detected as an increase in amplitude of monitored frequencies.
The ultrasonic frequencies detected by the Ultraprobe are reproduced as audible sounds. This
"heterodyned" signal can greatly assist a user in determining bearing problems. When listening, it
is recommended that a user become familiar with the sounds of a good bearing. A good bearing is
heard as a rushing or hissing noise. Crackling or rough sounds indicate a bearing in the failure
stage. In certain cases a damaged ball can be heard as a clicking sound whereas a high intensity,
uniform rough sound may indicate a damaged race or uniform ball damage.
Loud rushing sounds similar to the rushing sound of a good bearing only slightly rougher, can
indicate lack of lubrication. Short duration increases in the sound level with "rough" or "scratchy"
components indicate a rolling element hitting a "flat" spot and sliding on the bearing surfaces rather
than rotating. If this condition is detected, more frequent examinations should be scheduled.
Detecting Bearing Failure
There are two basic procedures of testing for bearing problems:
COMPARATIVE AND HISTORICAL. The comparative method involves testing two or more similar
bearings and "comparing" potential differences. Historical testing requires monitoring a specific
bearing over a period of time to establish its history. By analyzing bearing history, wear patterns at
particular ultrasonic frequencies become obvious which allows for early detection and correction of
bearing problems.
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For Comparative Test
1. Use contact (stethoscope) module.
2. Select a "test spot" on the bearing housing and mark it for future reference by marking it
with a center punch or with dye or by epoxy bonding a washer to the spot. Touch that spot
with the contact module. In ultrasonic sensing, the more mediums or materials ultrasound
has to travel through, the less accurate the reading will be. Therefore, be sure the contact
probe is actually touching the bearing housing. If this is difficult, touch a grease fitting or
touch as close to the bearing as possible.
3. Approach the bearings at the same angle, touching the same area on the bearing housing.
4. Reduce sensitivity) until the meter reads 20 (if unsure of this procedure, refer to
SENSITIVITY SELECTION DIAL (See page 6
5. Listen to bearing sound through headphones to hear the "quality" of the signal for proper
interpretation. (Refer to page 17 for discussion of audio interpretation.)
6. Select same type bearings under similar load conditions and same rotational speed.
7. Compare differences of meter reading and sound quality.
Procedure for Bearing History (Historical)
There are two methods to historically "trend" a bearing. The first is a very common, field proven
method called the "SIMPLE" method. The other provides greater flexibility in terms of decibel
selection and trending analysis. It is referred to as the "ATTENUATOR TRANSFER CURVE
method. Before starting with either of the two HISTORICAL methods for monitoring bearings, the
COMPARATIVE method must be used to determine a baseline.
Lack of Lubrication
To avoid lack of lubrication, note the following:
1. As the lubricant film reduces, the sound level will increase. A rise of about 8 dB over
baseline accompanied by a uniform rushing sound will indicate lack of lubrication.
2. When lubricating, add just enough to return the reading to base line.
3. Use caution. Some lubricants will need time to run to uniformly cover the bearing surfaces.
Lubricate a little at a time. DO NOT OVER-LUBRICATE
Over Lubrication
One of the most common causes of bearing failure is over lubrication. The excess stress of
lubricant often breaks bearing seals or causes a build up of heat which can create stress and
deformity.
To avoid over lubrication:
1. Don't lubricate if the base line reading and base line sound quality is maintained.
2. When lubricating, use just enough lubricant to bring the ultrasonic reading to baseline.
3. As mentioned in 3 above, use caution. Some lubricants will need time to uniformly cover the
bearing surfaces.
SLOW SPEED BEARINGS
Monitoring slow speed bearings is possible with the Ultraprobe 3000. Due to the sensitivity range, it
is quite possible to listen to the acoustic quality of bearings. In extremely slow bearings (less than
25 RPM), it is often necessary to disregard the meter and listen to the sound of the bearing. In
these extreme situations, the bearings are usually large (1"-2" and up) and greased with high
viscosity lubricant. Most often no sound will be heard as the grease will absorb most of the acoustic
energy. If a sound is heard, usually a crackling sound, there is some indication of deformity
occurring.
On most other slow speed bearings, it is possible to set a base line and monitor as described. It is
suggested that the Attenuator Transfer Curve method be used since the sensitivity will usually have
to be higher than normal.
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FFT INTERFACE
The Ultraprobe may be interfaced with FFT's via the UE-MP-BNC-2 Miniphone to BNC connector
or the UE DC2 FFT Adapter. The Miniphone plug is inserted into the headphone jack of the
Ultraprobe and the BNC connector is attached to the analog-in connector of the FFT. Using the
heterodyned - converted low frequency signal, the FFT will be able to receive the ultrasonic
information detected from the Ultraprobe. In this instance it can be used to monitor and trend low
speed bearings. It can also extend the use of the FFT to record all types of mechanical information
such as leaking valves, cavitation, gear wear, etc.
Proper Lubrication
Lack of Lubrication Increases
Reduces Friction
amplitude levels
General mechanical trouble shooting
As operating equipment begins to fail due to component wear, breakage or misalignment , sonic
and more importantly, ultrasonic shifts occur. The accompanying sound pattern changes can save
time and guess work in diagnosing problems if they are adequately monitored. Therefore, an
ultrasonic history of key components can prevent unplanned down-time. And just as important, if
equipment should begin to fail in the field, the ULTRAPROBE can be extremely useful in trouble
shooting problems.
TROUBLE SHOOTING:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Use the contact (stethoscope) module.
Touch test area(s): listen through headphones and observe the meter.
Adjust sensitivity until mechanical operation of the equipment is heard clearly.
Probe equipment by touching various suspect areas.
To focus in on problem sounds, while probing, reduce sensitivity gradually to assist in
locating the problem sound at its' loudest point. (This procedure is similar to the method
outlined in LEAK LOCATION, i.e., follow the sound to its loudest point.)
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Locating faulty steam traps
An ultrasonic test of steam traps is a positive test. The main advantage to ultrasonic testing is that
it isolates the area being tested by eliminating con-fusing background noises. A user can quickly
adjust to recognizing differences among various steam traps, of which there are three basic types:
mechanical, thermostatic and thermodynamic.
When testing steam traps ultrasonically:
1. Determine what type of trap is on the line. Be familiar with the operation of the trap. Is it
intermittent or continious drain?
2. Try to check whether the trap is in operation (is it hot or cold? Put your hand near, but do not
touch the trap, or, better yet, use a non-contact infrared thermometer).
3. Use the contact (stethoscope) module.
4. Try to touch the contact probe towards the discharge side of the trap. Press the trigger and
listen.
5. Listen for the intermittent or continuous flow operation of the trap. Intermittent traps are
usually the inverted bucket, thermodynamic (disc) and thermostatic (under light loads).
Continuous flow: include the float, float and thermostatic and (usually) thermostatic traps.
While testing intermittent traps, listen long enough to gauge the true cycle. In some cases,
this may be longer than 30 seconds. Bear in mind that the greater the load that comes to it,
the longer period of time it will stay open.
In checking a trap ultrasonically, a continuous rushing sound will often be the key indicator of live
steam passing through. There are subtleties for each type of trap that can be noted.
Use the sensitivity levels of the Sensitivity election Dial to assist your test. If a low pressure system
is to be checked, adjust the sensitivity UP toward 70; if a high pressure system (above 100 psi) is
to be checked, reduce the sensitivity level. (Some experimentation may be necessary to arrive at
the most desirable level to be tested.) Check upstream and reduce the sensitivity so that the meter
reads about 50% or lower, then touch the trap body downstream and compare readings.
General steam/condensate/flash steam confirmation
In instances where it may be difficult to determine the sound of steam, flash steam or condensate,
1. Touch at the immediate downstream side of the trap and reduce the sensitivity to get a midline reading on the meter (about 50%).
2. Move 15-30 cm (6-12 inches) downstream and listen. Flashing steam will show a large drop
off in intensity while leaking steam will show little drop off in intensity.
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INVERTED BUCKET TRAPS
Bucket trap drawing
Inverted Bucket Traps normally fail in the open position because the trap loses its prime. This
condition means a complete blow-through, not a partial loss. The trap will no longer operate
intermittently. Aside from a continuous rushing sound, another clue for steam blow-through is the
sound of the bucket clanging against the side of the trap.
A FLOAT AND THERMOSTATIC
A Float and Thermostatic trap normally fails in the "closed" position. A pinhole leak produced in the
ball float will cause the float to be weighted down or water hammer will collapse the ball float. Since
the trap is totally closed no sound will be heard. In addition, check the thermostatic element in the
float and thermostatic trap. If the trap is operating correctly, this element is usually quiet; if a
rushing sound is heard, this will indicate either steam or gas is blowing through the air vent. This
indicates that the vent has failed in the open position and is wasting energy.
THERMODYNAMIC (DISC)
Thermodynamic disc traps work on the difference in dynamic response to velocity change in the
flow of compressible and incompressible fluids. As steam enters, static pressure above the disc
forces the disc against the valve seat. The static pressure over a large area overcomes the high
inlet pressure of the steam. As the steam starts to condense, the pressure against the disc lessens
and the trap cycles. A good disc trap should cycle (hold-discharge-hold) 4-10 times per minute.
When it fails, it usually fails in the open position, allowing continuous blow through of steam.
THERMOSTATIC TRAPS
(bellows & bimetallic) operate on a difference in temperature between condensate and steam.
They build up condensate so that the temperature of condensate drops down to a certain level
below saturation temperature in order for the trap to open. By backing up condensate, the trap will
tend to modulate open or closed depending on load.
In a bellows trap, should the bellows become compressed by water hammer, it will not function
properly. The occurrence of a leak will prevent the balanced pressure action of these traps. When
either condition occurs, the trap will fail in its natural position either opened or closed. If the trap
fails closed, condensate will back up and no sound will be heard. If the trap fails open, a continous
rushing of live steam will be heard with bimetallic traps, as the bimetallic plates set due to the heat
they sense and the cooling effect on the plates, they may not set properly which will prevent the
plates from closing completely and al-low steam to pass through. This will be heard as a constant
rushing sound.
NOTE: A complimentary Steam Trap Trouble Shooting Guide is available. Contact UE Systems
directly on our website : www.uesystems.eu
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Locating faulty valves
Utilizing the contact (stethoscope) module in the Ultraprobe, valves can easily be monitored to
determine if a valve is operating properly. As a liquid or gas flows through a pipe, there is little or no
turbulence generated except at bends or obstacles. In the case of a leaking valve, the escaping
liquid or gas will move from a high to a low pressure area, creating turbulence on the low pressure
or "down-stream" side. This produces a white noise. The ultrasonic component of this "white noise"
is much stronger than the audible component. If a valve is leaking internally, the ultrasonic
emissions generated at the orifice site will be heard and noted on the meter. The sounds of a
leaking valve seat will vary depending upon the density of the liquid or gas. In some instances it will
be heard as a subtle crackling sound, at other times as a loud rushing sound. Sound quality
depends on fluid viscosity and internal pipe pressure differentials.
As an ex-ample, water flowing under low to mid pressures may be easily recognized as water.
However, water under high pressure rushing through a partially open valve may sound very much
like steam. To discriminate: reduce the sensitivity, touch a steam line and listen to the sound
quality, then touch a water line. Once you have become familiar with the sound differences,
continue your inspection.
A properly seated valve will generate no sound. In some high pressure situations, the ultrasound
generated within the system will be so intense that surface waves will travel from other valves or
parts of the system and make it difficult to diagnose valve leakage. In this case it is still possible to
diagnose valve blow-through by comparing sonic intensity differences by reducing the sensitivity
and touching just upstream of the valve, at the valve seat and just downstream of the valve.
Procedure for valve check
1.
2.
3.
4.
Use stethoscope module.
Touch downstream side of valve and listen through headset.
When necessary, if there is too much sound, reduce sensitivity.
For comparative readings, usually in high pres-sure systems:
a. Touch upstream side and reduce sensitivity to minimize any sound (usually bring the
meter to a mid-line "50 %" reading).
b. Touch valve seat and/or downstream side.
Compare sonic differentials. If the valve is leaking, the sound level on the seat or downstream side will be equal to or louder than the upstream side.
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ABCD METHOD
The ABCD method is recommended to check for the potential of competing ultrasounds
downstream that may carry back to the area of inspection and give a false indication of a valve
leak.For the ABCD method,
1. Refer to steps 1-4 above.
2. Mark two equidistant points upstream (these will be point A and Point B) and compare
them to two equidistant points downstream (point C and point D)
The sound intensity of points A and B are compared with test points C and D. If point C is higher
than points A and B, the valve is considered leaking. If point D is higher than point C, this is an
indication of sound being transmitted from another point downstream.
CONFIRMING VALVE LEAKAGE IN NOISY PIPE SYSTEMS
Occasionally in high pressure systems, stray signals occur from valves that are close by or from
pipes (or conduits) feeding into a common pipe that is near the down stream side of a valve. This
flow may produce false leak signals. In order to determine if the loud signal on the downstream
side is coming from a valve leak or from some other source:
1.
2.
3.
4.
Move close to the suspected source (i.e., the conduit or the other valve).
Touch at the upstream side of the suspected source.
Reduce sensitivity until the sounds are clearer.
Touch at short intervals (such as every 6 - 12 inches (15-30.5 cm) and note the meter
changes.
5. If the sound level decreases as you move towards the test valve, it indicates that the valve
is not leaking.
6. If the sound level increases as you approach the test valve, it is an indication of a leak in
the valve.
MISCELLANEOUS PROBLEM AREAS
UNDERGROUND LEAKS
Underground leak detection depends upon the amount of ultrasound generated by the particular
leak. Some slow leaks will emit very little ultrasound. Compounding the problem is the fact that
earth will tend to insulate ultrasound. In addition, loose soil will absorb more ultrasound than firm
soil. If the leak is close to the surface and is gross in nature, it will be quickly detected. The more
subtle leaks can also be detected but with some additional effort. In some instances it will be
necessary to build up pressure in the line to generate greater flow and more ultrasound. In other
cases it will be necessary to drain the pipe area in question, isolate the area by valving it off and
inject a gas (air or nitrogen) to generate ultrasound through the leak site. This latter method has
proven very successful. It is also possible to inject a test gas into the test area of the pipe without
draining it. As the pressurized gas moves through the liquid into the leak site, it produces a
crackling sound, which may be detected.
PROCEDURE:
1. Use contact (stethoscope) module.
2. Touch surfaces over ground - DO NOT JAM probe to ground. Jamming can cause probe
damage.
In some instances it will be necessary to get close to the "source" of the leak. In this situation, use
a thin, sturdy metal rod and drive it down close to, but not touching, the pipe. Touch the contact
probe to the metal rod and listen for the leak sound. This should be repeated approximately every
1-3 feet until the leak sound is heard.
To locate the leak area, gradually position the rod until the leak sound is heard at its loudest point.
An alternative to this is to use a flat metal disc or coin and drop it on the test area. Touch the disc
and listen at 20 kHz. This is useful when testing concrete or asphalt to eliminate scratching sounds
caused by slight movements of the stethoscope module on these surfaces.
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LEAKAGE BEHIND WALLS
1. Look for water or steam markings such as discoloration, spots in wall or ceiling, etc.
2. If steam, feel for warm spots in wall or ceiling or use a non-contact infrared thermometer.
3. Listen for leak sounds. The louder the signal the closer you are to the leak site.
PARTIAL BLOCKAGE:
When partial blockage exists, a condition similar to that of a bypassing valve is produced. The
partial blockage will generate ultrasonic signals (often produced by turbulence just down stream). If
a partial blockage is suspected, a section of piping should be inspected at various intervals. The
ultrasound generated within the piping will be greatest at the site of the partial blockage.
PROCEDURE:
1. Use stethoscope module.
2. Touch downstream side of suspected area and listen through headset.
3. When necessary, if there is too much sound, reduce sensitivity.
4. Listen for an increase in ultrasound created by the turbulence of partial blockage.
FLOW DIRECTION
Flow in piping increases In intensity as it passes through a restriction or a bend in the piping. As
flow travels upstream, there is an increase in turbulence and therefore the intensity of the ultrasonic
element of that turbulence at the flow restriction. In testing flow direction, the ultrasonic levels will
have greater intensity in the DOWNSTREAM side than in the UPSTREAM side.
PROCEDURE:
1. Use stethoscope mode.
2. Begin test at maximum sensitivity level.
3. Locate a bend in the pipe system (preferably 60 degrees or more).
4. Touch one side of bend and note dB reading.
5. Touch other side of bend and note dB reading.
6. The side with the higher (louder) reading should be the downstream side.
NOTE: Should it be difficult to observe a sound differential, reduce sensitivity and test as described
until a sonic difference is recognized.
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Ultrasound Technology
The technology of ultrasound is concerned with sound waves that occur above human perception.
The average threshold of human perception is 16,500 Hertz. Although the highest sounds some
humans are capable of hearing is 21,000 Hertz, ultrasound technology is usually concerned with
frequencies from 20,000 Hertz and up. Another way of stating 20,000 Hertz is 20 kHz, or
KILOHERTZ. One kilo Hertz is 1,000 Hertz.
Low Freq.
High Freq.
Figure A
Since ultrasound is a high frequency , it is a short wave signal. Its' properties are different from
audible or low frequency sounds. A low frequency sound requires less acoustic energy to travel the
same distance as high frequency sound (Fig. A).
The ultrasound technology utilized by the Ultra-probe is generally referred to as Airborne
ultrasound. Airborne ultrasound is concerned with the transmission and reception of ultrasound
through the atmosphere without the need of sound conductive (interface) gels. It can and does
incorporate methods of receiving signals generated through one or more media via wave guides.
There are ultrasonic components in practically all forms of friction. As an example, if you were to
rub your thumb and forefinger together, you will generate a signal in the ultrasonic range. Although
you might be able to very faintly hear the audible tones of this friction, with the Ultraprobe it will
sound extremely loud. The reason for the loudness is that the Ultraprobe converts the ultrasonic
signal into an audible range and then amplifies it. Due to the comparative low amplitude nature of
ultrasound, amplification is a very important feature.
Although there are obvious audible sounds emitted by most operating equipment, it is the
ultrasonic elements of the acoustic emissions that are generally the most important. For
preventative maintenance, many times an individual will listen to a bearing through some simple
type of audio pick-up to determine bearing wear.
Since that individual is hearing ONLY the audio elements of the signal, the results of that type of
diagnosis will be quite gross. The subtleties of change within the ultrasonic range will not be
perceived and therefore omitted.
When a bearing is perceived as being bad in the audio range it is in need of immediate
replacement.
Ultrasound offers a predictable diagnostic capacity. When changes begin to occur in the ultrasonic
range, there is still time to plan appropriate maintenance. In the area of leak detection, ultrasound
offers a fast, accurate method of locating minute as well as gross leaks. Since ultrasound is a short
wave signal, the ultrasonic elements of a leak will be loudest and most clearly perceived at the leak
site. In loud factory type environments, this aspect of ultrasound makes it even more useful.
Most ambient sounds in a factory will block out the low frequency elements of a leak and there by
render audible leak inspection useless. Since the Ultraprobe is not capable of responding to low
frequency sounds, it will hear only the ultrasonic elements of a leak. By scanning the test area, a
user may quickly spot a leak
Electrical discharges such as arcing, tracking and corona have strong ultrasonic components that
may be readily detected. As with generic detection, these potential problems can be detected in
noisy plant environments with the Ultraprobe
Version 1
33
Instructions for setting combination on carrying case
The combination is factory set at ,0-0-0,, Setting your personal combination:
1. Open the case. Looking at the back of the lock inside the case you will see a change lever.
Move this change lever to the middle of the lock so that it hooks behind the change notch
(picture 1 ).
2. Now set your personal combination by turning the dials to the desired combination (i.e.
birthday, phone no. etc.)
3. Move the change lever back to the normal position (picture 2).
4. To lock, rotate one or more dials. To open the lock, set your personal combination.
International patents pending.
1.
2.
Version 1
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Specifications Ultraprobe® 3000
Construction
Circuitry
Frequency
Response Time
Display
Memory
Battery
Operating Temp.
Output(s)
Available Probes
Headset
Indicators
Threshold
Dimensions
Weight
Warranty
Hand-held pistol type made with ABS plastic
Solid state analog and SMD digital circuitry with temperature
compensation
Frequency response: 35-45 kHz
<10 milliseconds
128x64 Graphic LED with LED backlight
400 storage locations
Li Polymer Rechargeable
0 °C to 50 °C (32 °F to 122 °F)
Calibrated heterodyned output, decibel (dB) frequency, USB data
output
Scanning module and stethoscope (contact) module, long range
module,
RAS MT
Deluxe noise attenuating headphones. Over 23 dB of noise
attenuation.
Meets or exceeds specifications and OSHA standards
dB, battery status and 16 segment bar graph, sensitivity setting,
record number
1 x 10-2 std: cc/sec to 1 x 10-3 std. cc/sec
Complete kit in Zero Halliburton aluminum carrying case
Pistol Unit: 0.45 kg (1 lbs) Carrying Case: 4.99 kg (11 lbs)
1 year standard, 5 years with completed registration form
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