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Thermography PM

  • 1.  Thermography PM

    Posted 09-24-2023 11:43
    Hello members,

    I work for a facility that have hundreds of motor s and rotating equipment of various size s. I am task to set up a Thermal imaging PM, but in my search on the internet I could find any good guide or samples of Thermal Imaging PMs. Does anyone have any ideas or can point me in the right direction.


    Sent from my iPhone

  • 2.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 00:25

    Here's a link to a good example for the electric side. You can also include the mechanical side to identify hot spots on motors or coupling problems.

    Jim Cerda
    JJC Consulting 

  • 3.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-26-2023 11:18

    Many years ago I worked in Mexico setting up predictive maintenance systems that included vibration analysis, ultrasound and oil analysis as well as thermography.  The attached docs include a short training manual I prepared as well as a PM procedure and some examples.  I hope they may be useful.

    Ron Frend


  • 4.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 01:22

    Hey Greg,

    We have a thermography PM implemented at our site. It is triggered once a year. In a year we have distributed equipment month wise e.g. Motors, Transformers, Junction Boxes and Distribution Boxes, Switchgears, Overhead lines etc. 

    During the PM, we do thermography of all equipment and issue reports. Data is stored and is available for comparison with next PM. Of course we ensure that we cover the equipment in the same time of the year so as to maintain uniformity in ambient temp for outdoor equipment. 

    Read my article on Imp tips of thermography:

    Overhead Power Lines Thermography

    Linkedin remove preview
    Overhead Power Lines Thermography
    Thermography is good technique to identify faults and potential weak areas/hotspots in Overhead lines. It can be made part of standard Surveillance regime to observe all conductor connecting points, insulators, clamps etc.
    View this on Linkedin >

    Hope this helps.



    Mutahir Rasool

  • 5.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 02:27

    Inspection process

    1. Use existing lists of equipment from a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) or another inventory tool.
    2. Eliminate items that aren't well suited for infrared measurement.
    3. Review maintenance and production records. Prioritize key equipment that is prone to failure or often causes production bottlenecks.
    4. Use a database or spreadsheet to group the critical equipment together, either by area or function, into roughly 2- to 3-hour inspection blocks.
    5. Use your thermal camera to capture baseline images of each piece of critical equipment. Note: on some pieces of equipment, you may want to regularly capture multiple thermal images of key components or subsystems.
    6. Download the baseline images into software and document your route with location descriptions, inspection notes, emissivity and RTC levels and alarm levels if appropriate.
    7. When the next inspection is due, if your imager supports uploading, simply load the previous inspection images onto the camera and follow the onscreen prompts.

    This is a guide from fluke, you can tweak it to suit your purpose,it largely would depend on the cmms in use in your company,  basically you have to create naintenance plans that would generate  workorders with different operations based on different schedule start date.

    shittu olakunle

  • 6.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 02:45

    Hi Gregory

    You may find BINDT's Infrared Thermography Handbook Volumes 1 & 2 a useful reference:

    Consider starting with the electrical side by surveying all the panels. If thermal imaging surveying and visual inspection has not been done previously, it is possible that there will be a large number of findings that require attention, age and loading dependent. For the rotating equipment side, consider it as a secondary method to other condition monitoring methods, such as vibration, to assist with investigation rather than the primary detection method. For other equipment types, such as furnaces with refractories and hydraulic systems, it may have to be assessed on a case by case. 

    Best regards


    Michalis Hadjiandreou

  • 7.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 07:16
    Edited by Patty Warner 09-25-2023 07:44

    Good morning,

    At our facility, we monitor the electrical components for our manufacturing, assembly, and process equipment. Everything from electrical cabinets, MCC buckets, main disconnects, busways, building, roof, fork truck connections, etc. I'll attach an article that I wrote for a recertification that may help you. Our PMs are written per asset. We have check sheets we bring with us during the inspections for each machining line and/or area that lists all of the cabinets and/or equipment we need to inspect along with individual notes and safety reminders. The job plan on the PMs are the same for all of the electrical IR inspections on the assets ("Inspect all main electrical cabinets" type of verbiage). The kicker is to have a comprehensive sheet to follow while performing the inspections so you don't miss anything. We found this method WAY easier than developing 1,000s of JPs that had to be modified individually vs one check sheet for each line. We recently started up a 6 mo PM for our final parts mounting trades that mimics an inspection performed every 3 yrs by the manufacturer of overhead engine conveyer equipment. Trades can now have a better idea on temperature trends as the months go by vs years. I'll attach one of those reports as well. Good luck!

    Patty Warner


    Check sheets.pdf   816 KB 1 version

  • 8.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 07:51


    The Infraspection Institute has a standard with limits and procedures specifically for this type of application.  You can find the link here: Infraspection - Standards



    Howard W Penrose, Ph.D., CMRP
    MotorDoc LLC
    Lombard, IL

  • 9.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 09:29

    Although there are no specific work instructions available, I suggest the following steps to effectively monitor the system in question:

    1. Capture a macro image of the system.

    2. Divide the system into distinct areas.

    3. Take images of each area.

    4. Record and graph the collected data for evaluation purposes.

    5. Analyze the data and draw conclusions based on the results.

    6. Make an informed decision based on the analysis.

    By following these steps, you can effectively monitor the system and make informed decisions based on accurate data analysis.

    Jose Castellanos

  • 10.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-25-2023 10:50

    Try contacting The Infraspection Institute or other IR training vendor. It is not wise to attempt to set up a PM program unless you have at lease a basic understanding of the technology, (Level 1 certification). Experience is learning from your own mistakes, Education is learning from someone else's mistakes. Education is MUCH less expensive.

    Gene Vogel

    Eugene Vogel

  • 11.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-26-2023 07:50


    Full disclosure, I work for FLIR.

    With regards to infrared, we certainly have quite a bit to offer in this area. With regards to your specific question, I'd look at NFPA 70B for some guidance here. The language in NFPA 70B has changed from thermography being recommended to now being required. There are a fair number of components within the document that provide insight into frequency of inspection as well as how it ties into a larger electrical maintenance program.

    One of the most important components of any thermal inspection for electrical equipment is ensuring the image is being taken on equipment that is at a minimum under 40% load. Secondly, the image capture is consistent (same angle and distance). If you don't document rated load and current load, comparison of images does not tell the full story.

    One thing we have created here at FLIR is a tool called Route Creator. It allows you to deploy a route of assets directly on your camera to quickly and easily capture all your thermography related images as well as supporting data to quickly create necessary reports.

    We recently added functionality to these routes called Reference Imaging, that allows you to use a previous inspection image as a baseline, directly on the camera. Observing the previous image capture camera settings, a visual and thermal image to ensure you're capturing the right image from the right angle and distance, as well as any previous boxes or spots you had. It also includes an image overlay function that allows you to 'ghost' the previous image right on the screen, ensuring even more accuracy.

    If this is something you or anyone else is interested in, I'm happy to show you the function. It really is a game changer for those who need to perform repeatable inspections on assets.

    John Gould

  • 12.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-27-2023 07:06

    The FLIR route collector appears a very useful tool in organizing your assets for routine thermography inspection, setting references, and quick access to historical trends. Going to the higher industrial voltages especially 4160-15KV, the flash protection to open cabinets becomes excessive and the need to place permanently mounted optics in the gear that can be accessed outside the cabinets becomes a necessity. For example, I experienced a poorly assembled stress cone track to ground on a 138KV to 13.8KV 40MVA transformer secondary buss which resulted in significant damage. There's little doubt this could have been prevented with an infrared scan but removing the large heavy panels panels during operation is extremly hazardous and even infrared windows doesn't provide a clear scan of the connections. The only alternative for high voltage gear appears permanently installed optics.


    Vic Rioli

    Naples, Florida USA



  • 13.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-27-2023 07:53

    Vic, I would consider the use of IR Windows as an alternative. They have both round and large format depending on the application. This eliminates the need for hot work permits, suiting up in arc flash suits, etc. Happy to talk to you directly about those as well as we have many of our customers with high voltage applications that have successfully implemented windows and have considerable success in eliminating unnecessary inspection time, increased safety and more effective IR inspection programs as a result.

    John Gould
    Director of Global Business Development - Condition Monitoring

  • 14.  RE: Thermography PM

    Posted 09-29-2023 17:51



    Windows would certainly be a more cost effective solution compared to permantly mounted optics but the windows availble when I last looked at this were rather restrictive. The fault and flash energy on 13.8kv 2,000 amp gear is extremely hard to contain and windows were thick and small but certainly I-R  scanning windows may have improved. Thanks!


    Vic Rioli

    Naples, Florida USA