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Shock and Vibration
Volume 9 (2002), Issue 4-5, Pages 225-234

New Technique for Evaluation of Global Vibration Levels in Rolling Bearings

Rui Gomes Teixeira de Almeida, Silmara Alexandra da Silva Vicente, and Linilson Rodrigues Padovese

Universidade de São Paulo, Escola Politécnica, Depto. de Engenharia Mecânica, Brazil

Received 15 November 2002; Revised 15 November 2002

Copyright © 2002 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In the last years new technologies and methodologies have been developed for increasing the reliability of fault diagnosis in mechanical equipment, mainly in rotating machinery. Global vibration indexes as RMS, Kurtosis, etc., are widespread known in industry and in addition, are recommended by international norms. Despite that, these parameters do not allow reaching reliable equipment condition diagnosis. They are attractive for their apparent simplicity of interpretation. This work presents a discussion about the diagnosis possibilities based on these traditional parameters. The database used comprises rolling bearings vibration signals taking into account different fault conditions, several shaft speeds and loading. The obtained results show that these global vibration parameters are limited regarding correct fault diagnosis, especially in initial faults condition. As an alternative method a new technique is proposed. This technique seeks to obtain a global parameter that makes better characterization of fault condition. This methodology, named Residual Energy, uses integration of the difference between the power spectrum density of the fault condition and the normal one. The results obtained with this technique are compared with the traditional RMS and Kurtosis.