Failure Analysis of a Reactor Pool Cooling Pump Using Modal and Vibration Analysis
by Blake W. Van Hoy, Thomas J. Hazelwood, Larry D, Phillips
Two 75 HP pumps redundantly supply cooling water to the reactor pool of the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). Due to a recent history of premature bearing failures, one of these pumps has undergone maintenance to deal with possible issues of misalignment and base looseness. Vibration analysis and modal analysis including steady state spectrum, operational deflection shape, run up and down order tracking, and modal impact have been utilized to verify the effectiveness of the maintenance and identify possible remaining failure modes. The studies conclude that the pump is, after the maintenance, in an overall good conditional state as per ISO 10816, but a few failure modes remain. These modes consist of some shaft unbalance, considerable shaft misalignment intensified by piping movement, possible motor ground fault, hydrodynamic issues such as cavitation with modal interaction, and base looseness. These failure modes and their supporting data have been used to make suggestions for future maintenance, to verify the effectiveness of the previous maintenance, and to provide a base on which to check future data upon. This report will cover the testing setup, methodology, analysis results, and maintenance suggestions.