In the thin of it: Real-time viscosity sensor

SenGenuity’s ViSmart viscosity sensors can correlate readings with instrument data for real-time, oil-condition monitoring applications.

02/28/2008


SenGenuity , the Sensors and Advanced Packaging Division of Vectron International, announced that its ViSmart viscosity sensors can correlate readings with data acquired from lab instrumentation for challenging, real-time, in-line oil-condition monitoring applications. Today’s significant legacy data and industry standards require that sensor readings be equivalent to those obtained by lab methods, the company says. This capability ensures that customers can obtain lab-compatible results from the ViSmart sensor in-line and real-time for in-situ viscosity measurements, complimenting lab measurements and analysis methods.
“Measuring the viscosity of oil is a rapid method of determining oil condition, and is universally considered to be one of the key parameters in assessing asset readiness,” said Kerem Durdag, director of business development at SenGenuity. “By successfully creating correlation functions that relate our ViSmart sensor data to ASTM lab viscometer data, we have clearly demonstrated that its solid-state, real-time, in-line viscosity sensor can trend and track viscosity data with accuracy levels ranging from 91% to 99%, as compared to an industry-standard lab viscometer.”
The company obtained the constants in the interpolation function between kinematic viscosity and ViSmart’s native unit of measurement, acoustic viscosity. It used the sensor to find the functional dependence of constants on shear rate for each oil tested, which included mineral and synthetic oils for engine, turbine, hydraulic and gear applications. It created a look-up function that allowed oil viscosity (kinematic, dynamic, or acoustic) to be interpolated at the actual temperature and shear rate. For each oil, a pair of correlation functions converts between the measured acoustic viscosity and interpolated kinematic viscosity. The R2 of the correlation for individual oils and groups of oils were determined.
“This successful correlation enables SenGenuity to provide our customers with the necessary tools to create their own correlation functions, allowing them to map the dataset to their legacy database and use our sensor for their applications,” said Shravan Jumani, product manager, SenGenuity. “Our customers can now determine that our ViSmart viscosity sensors not only operate at repeatable shear rates but also that the operating shear rates are relevant to the assets being lubricated under normal operating conditions.”
Theucts. The sensor has been tested in actual commercial and military specified oils to establish a correlation function between the ASTM methods acquired dataset and the sensor generated viscosity values. These correlation functions can be stored on any handheld for automatic conversion. The sensoris currently installed in commercial markets such as machine tool oil monitoring and coating applications in rigorous environments where ROI benefits have been realized.
The ViSmart model series can be connected to any computer or control platform via the standard protocols, including the VisConnect transmitter and the forthcoming CANbus option, to provide a continuous audit trail for process monitoring. Additionally, customers can leverage SenGenuity’s starter kit bench-top viscometer data station to acquire multiple channels of continuous viscosity and temperature data.
— Edited by C.G. Masi , senior editor
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