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Condition monitoring

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Condition monitoring ... ...is the use of some kind of non-destructive technique (physical, chemical or some other) to determine how close a device or a part of a device is to failing. Among the techniques sometimes used are vibration analysis, eddy current analysis, ultrasonic analysis, and infrared imaging. Other methods include detecting pressure changes (e.g. pressure differences across a filter); temperature effects (e.g. from the frictional heating associated with a mechanically worn bearing); or chemical effects (e.g. the presence of trace quantities of metal in lubricants). Condition monitoring techniques are used to track changes in the performance of equipment and components over time to identify an “early warning” point, well before the point at which the component reaches the wear out zone of its life cycle. While use of the unaided human senses are is not considered to be a very sensitive or reliable technique for predicting failures in this way, the use of visual inspections is quite common in the context of medical equipment maintenance.

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