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Training - Vibration Analysis - Balancing

CUSTOMER SERVICE REPORT


The services of MacAnalysis were requested by Paper Mill Inc., in Kapuskasing, Ontario to asses balancing procedures for similar felt rolls used on 4 paper machines. Machine speeds range from 550 to 700 RPM. Safety concerns were raised by a highly experienced balancing team about increasing the balancing speed to 2800 FPM (700 RPM) on the balancing stand. This was to accommodate an increase in speed on one of the 4 paper machines. The technicians typically balanced these rolls at 2200 FPM or 550 RPM. Another concern was balancing these flexible rolls at specific speeds for each Paper machine.

DISCUSSION
Any discussion of flexible rotors requires a brief explanation of resonance. Resonance occurs when a forcing frequency coincides with a system component natural frequency. Any frequency with noticeable amplitude can excite a system into resonance. Common forcing frequencies include rotational speeds, blade pass and gear mesh frequencies, misalignment, unbalance, rub and impact events, etc A rotor operating at its critical speed is a special case of resonance where the rotating speed of the rotor coincides with its own natural frequency. Long slender rotors like felt rolls on paper machines will usually pass through their first bending mode or first critical as the machine comes up to operating speed. Two factors that influence a resonant response are system damping and the proximity of the forcing frequency to the system component natural frequency. Vibration amplitude increases as the forcing frequency approaches the natural frequency and reaches a maximum when they coincide.

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The lower plot in Fig 1 shows that systems with a high degree of damping will have a broad frequency range where resonance can occur, but with little amplification. Systems with a low degree of damping have a narrow band of frequencies where resonance can occur, but amplification can be tremendous.
P H A S E

360 270 180 90


Low Damping High Damping

A M P L I T U D
E

0
Low Damping High Damping

FIG 1

The upper plot in Figure 1 illustrates an important physical phenomenon that occurs below, during and above a resonant event. System response to a forcing frequency differs from region to region resulting in significant phase changes. The lower plot in Figure 1 shows vibration amplitude is greatest at resonance. Below resonance, system stiffness is the main controlling factor to the amount of vibration experienced by the machine or structure. The forcing frequency and the system response to that force are in phase. Vibration response of a machine operating at resonance is controlled by the damping or Q factor of the resonant component. At resonance, the forcing frequency and the system response to that force are 90 out of phase. The resonant component responds to the forcing frequency 90 after the applied force. Above resonance, the mass of the machine or structure will have the most influence on how much vibration is experienced. Above resonance, the forcing frequency and the system response to that force are 180 out of phase. The system responds to the forcing frequency 180 after the applied force.

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The easiest way to explain this phase relationship is by examining an unbalanced flexible rotor operating below, at and above resonance or its critical speed. Fig 2 demonstrates that below resonance, or below the rotor critical, the heavy spot and the high spot are in the same angular location. The high spot can be considered that part of the rotor that deflects due to the force of unbalance. At the rotor critical, the heavy spot leads the high spot by 90. Above rotor critical, the heavy spot leads the high spot by 180.
HS

HS HS

HS

HS

HS

Below Rotor Critical HS Heavy Spot

At Rotor Critical HS High Spot FIG 2

Above Rotor Critical

The key points made here are: . Roll deflection is greatest at its critical speed . Damping characteristics of the roll will determine its amplification factor . There is a 90 phase difference for rolls operating below rotor critical and the critical speed itself. . There is a 180 phase difference for rolls operating below rotor critical and above rotor critical. The brief explanation emphasizes the importance of balancing flexible rolls at their critical speeds. This controls and minimizes vibration as a paper machine passes through the critical speed of each felt roll as it comes up to operating speed. A large paper machine can have as many as 80 felt rolls that must pass through their critical speeds before getting to the operating speed. This can be highly destructive if the rolls were not balanced as flexible rotors, at their critical speeds, in a balancing stand.

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OBSERVATIONS
The length, diameter and shell thickness determines the natural frequency of the felt roll and therefore its critical speed. Tests were done on 2 felt rolls with the following dimensions: Shell face = 240 Bearing center to center = 258 Shell OD = 15 Shell thickness of 0.2 and 0.5 The Coastdown Data presented in Fig 3 & 4 was taken in the horizontal direction on the balancing stand and show the amplitude of the forcing frequency at the rotor critical speed which is 90 out of phase with the vertical response at rotor critical. This means that the amplitude curve forms a valley at resonance in the horizontal direction and a hill in the vertical direction. The Bode Plot in Fig 3 shows coastdown data taken on the balancing stand with the first felt roll tested. The 90 phase shift from 270 to 360 occurs at 506 RPM. This is the critical speed or first bending mode of this felt roll. The phase shift and amplitude change is very gradual throughout the entire speed range during the coastdown test. This indicates a high degree of damping in the felt roll material and allows for a broader speed range to balance this roll as a flexible rotor. The bode plot in Figure 3 shows that maximum roll deflection occurs between 475 to 525 RPM, and is the suggested balancing speed range for this felt roll.

Fig 3

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The Bode Plot in Fig 4 shows coastdown data taken on the balancing stand with the second felt roll tested. The 90 phase shift from 280 to 190 occurs at 601 RPM. This is the critical speed or first bending mode of this felt roll. The bode plot in Fig 4 shows that maximum roll deflection occurs between 575 to 625 RPM, and is the suggested balancing speed range for this felt roll.

Fig 4

The difference in critical speed frequencies between the 2 felt rolls is due to differences in shell thickness. The critical speed range for most of the 400 felt rolls is between 500 and 600 RPM. Bode plots 3 & 4 show the critical speed of the 2 rolls tested to be 506 and 601 RPM respectively. The balancing speed of 550 RPM, used by the balancing team, is centered between these two critical speed frequencies. If only one balancing speed could be selected to balance these felt rolls, 550 RPM would be the best choice.

CONCLUSIONS
Balancing felt rolls at rotor critical will ensure smooth operation over a broad speed range. Most often the unbalance vibration amplitude level will decrease at higher speeds once the felt roll has been balanced at its critical speed. It should be remembered that vibration amplification is greatest at the felt roll critical speed. When a roll operates below or above its critical speed, amplitude levels should be lower than when rotating in the amplification region of the felt roll critical speed. A question was raised by the balancing team about the safety of balancing these rolls at 700 RPM. The Bode plots in Figure 3 & 4 show that these 2 rolls were spun up to 800 RPM during the tests. Everyone was comfortable with the rotor turning at this speed in the balancing stand.

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Since flexible rolls must be balanced at their critical speed, its common practice to balance felt rolls well in excess of 700 RPM depending on the natural frequency of the roll. I have balanced flexible rolls up to 1000 RPM on a Soft Bearing Balancing Stand, like your own, without incident. Higher speeds on a balancing stand do increase the potential for accidents, but these risks are minimal if the same basic safety measures are followed as when balancing a felt roll at lower speeds. These safety principals are well understood by your balancing technicians.

RECOMMENDATIONS
If nothing is changed in your balancing procedure, your paper machine bearings will suffer little from the devastating effects of centrifugal force due to unbalance, even on the paper machine running at 2800 FPM or 700 RPM. Balancing all rolls at 550 RPM is a perfect compromise to achieve low vibration amplitude levels, at rotor critical, in a minimal amount of time. Extended bearing life on felt rolls can be achieved by fine tuning the balancing operation. If each roll is balanced at its determined critical speed instead of the predetermined average speed of 550 RPM, lower overall amplitude levels and smoother paper machine performance will be the reward. The easiest way to determine the critical speed of your felt rolls is to run a Bode Plot like those presented in Fig 3 and 4. Another way is to simply observe the amplitude and phase shift on the balancing instrument while bringing the roll up to speed in the balancing stand. Once the roll has been balanced as a flexible rotor, it is recommended that the roll be checked at 700 RPM and trim balanced if necessary. This will ensure smooth felt roll operation in all 4 paper machines. If any further information or assistance is required, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Douglas J MacMillan Technical Director MacAnalysis

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