The Role of Incremental Encoders in Optimizing the Performance of Aero-Engines

Although machine accuracy is important for all industries, it’s particularly critical for aerospace. To safely fly passengers around the world, every machine component must excel. To achieve that goal, this industry relies heavily on predictive maintenance diagnostics.

In other words, rather than put out fires as they happen, the aerospace performs preventive and predictive maintenance. Sometimes, it does this in-house. Other times, it utilizes the services of an outside source that specializes in this field. In particular, this type of maintenance focuses on engines.

Key Predictive Maintenance Tools

A commercial Boeing 747 jet burns through roughly five gallons of fuel for every mile traveled. That means to fly from Hong Kong to London, an airliner goes through approximately 30,000 gallons. Then when you multiply the number of flights each day, that’s a tremendous amount of fuel.

To fill planes with passengers in a fiercely competitive industry, commercial airliners must keep prices affordable. So, they have to rely on solutions that make the engines more efficient. Not only that but burning through that much fuel puts a lot of pressure on the engines. This is why they depend on the right predictive maintenance tools.

Here are two examples of the tools that commercial airliners rely on for both preventive and predictive maintenance:

Honeycomb Inspections

In the past, commercial airliners manually inspected jet engines using vernier calipers. Unfortunately, this required a significant amount of time and highly skilled technicians. Both of these made it more expensive to improve efficiency and keep aero-engines in pristine condition. So, this industry knew it needed better options for predictive maintenance diagnostics.

One company came up with a brilliant preventive and predictive maintenance solution. It developed new honeycomb seals that increase work efficiency by 50 percent. At the same time, they dramatically reduce the risk of human error.

However, that’s not all. These new honeycomb seals plug a gap between the turbine wall and rotating blades. As a result, not only did fuel efficiency also improve, but aero-engines have a longer service life too.

Machine Predictive Maintenance Tools

Another development involved making machine tools more reliable. So, Renishaw manufactured an innovative incremental encoder known as the QC20-W Ballbar.

This device tracks and identifies issues early on by taking continuous measurements. As a result, different industries can take corrective action before a small problem spirals out of control.

Incremental Encoders Benefit Multiple Industries

Whether your company is in the aerospace or manufacturing industry, you could benefit by using an incremental encoder. Using this as a part of your overall predictive maintenance diagnostics will save you money and time.

Contact Maintenance Diagnostic Systems, Inc for personalized service. We can provide you with a quality incremental encoder or perform measurement testing. Our goal is to improve your preventive and predictive maintenance processes.