Mechanical Wear Assessment of Helicopter Engines by Ferrography (Englisch)

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Two Ferrography analyzers, an analytical or laboratory Ferrograph and an On-Line (quasi-real-time) Ferrograph, were evaluated. The analytical Ferrograph was found to be an effective supplement to the spectrometric oil analysis program (SOAP) since the Ferrograph analyzes particles in the range of 1 to over 100 microns while SOAP analyzes particles below 5 microns in size. Comments are also offered on a third analyzer, the Direct Reading (DR) Ferrograph. To evaluate the analytical Ferrograph, oil samples from helicopters at Fort Devens, Massachusetts, were analyzed. One transmission was found with excessive wear particles which was later verified by SOAP. The On-Line Ferrograph was tested in 410 hours of operation using a T53-L-13B helicopter engine in a test call at the Corpus Christi Army Depot. After determining baseline data for the engine, defective bearings were substituted to enhance particle wear penetration. The particles subsequently generated were successfully detected by both the On-Line Ferrograph and SOAP.