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Infrared Thermograph Testing

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Thermography Testing

Thermographic inspection refers to the nondestructive testing of parts, materials or systems through the imaging of the thermal patterns at the object's surface. Strictly speaking, the term thermography alone, refers to all thermographic inspection techniques regardless of the physical phenomena used to monitor the thermal changes. For instance, the application of a temperature sensitive coating to a surface in order to measure its temperature is a thermographic inspection contact technique based on heat conduction where there is no infrared sensor involved.

Thermographic testing, also known as infrared inspection, is a contact-free predictive maintenance method used to detect connections defects, system overloads, deteriorated insulation, and other potential problems in electrical components. Infrared thermography is used to find areas of excess heat so that problems can be corrected before they lead to excess power usage, increased maintenance costs, service interruptions, catastrophic equipment failure, and/or equipment damage.

How does thermographic testing work?

Thermography measures surface temperatures of electrical components by using highly specialized infrared visual scanning technology. During a scan, a thermal 'camera' is used to pick up traces of heat that otherwise do not appear on the visual light spectrum, allowing inspectors to easily identify heat anomalies by their color in the thermal image.

Why use thermographic testing ?

When current flows through an energized electrical system, it meets resistance from the individual connections and components within the system. As these components and connections deteriorate over time, their resistance increases, causing localized increases in heat. Whether it's due to an old connection or a poorly made component, these concentrations of heat can cause equipment failure and energy waste if left unchecked. Thermography can detect these temperature increases ahead of time, allowing you to address the issue before it becomes a serious problem.

Is thermographic testing necessary?

There are several risks associated with electrical equipment failure, some more serious than others. Equipment failure can be quite costly when you factor in repairs and work stoppages. But there are physical risks involved too. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) estimates that around ten percent of all fires that occur in manufacturing facilities are related to electrical system failures. Furthermore, component and connection failures can expose employees to live electrical circuits, putting them at risk of serious injury or death from electrocution. Predictive maintenance services such as thermographic testing can help you avoid these dangers long before they occur.


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