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An experimental study on vibration signatures for detecting incipient cavitation in centrifugal pumps based on envelope spectrum analysis
Author(s): A. Ramadhan Al-Obaidi, Hossein Towsyfyan
Keywords: Centrifugal pump, inception of cavitation, vibration signal, envelope spectrum analysis
Vibration signatures have been studied for monitoring the condition of centrifugal pumps by many researchers, however, there is limited published information on the application of vibration analysis to incipient pump cavitation. The paper will review the state of the art in the field and develops an effective signal processing approach based on envelope spectral analysis to close this gap. A purpose-built test rig was employed for recording vibration signals from a centrifugal pump at a wide range of operating conditions. The collected data was then processed using time domain and frequency domain analysis methods. The study has shown that vibration signal parameters: peak value, root mean squared (RMS), crest factor along with vibration spectrum allow development of cavitation to be diagnosed reliably. However, conventional signal processing methods may not produce a clear separation of the incipient cavitation from the healthy baseline. Therefore, envelope spectrum analysis has been carried out on recorded vibration signatures to detect the onset of cavitation from the baseline and satisfactory results have been perceived.