Structural Vibrations Associated with Large Incubation Tanks

by Timothy Carpenter, Stoll, Evans, Woods &, Associates, Ann Arbor, MI, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Structural Design, Cementitious Products, and Case Histories


It is the purpose of this paper to describe the format of an investigation wherein the train of evidence led from an assumption of a strictly mechanical cause to an actual cause that was not anticipated at the onset of the investigation. The client for this project is involved in the manufacture of products which requires the incubation and rapid growth of specialized fungi under highly controlled (and sterile) conditions. The process requires a series of stages, commencing with the isolation of specific types of fungii, their propagation under laboratory conditions until a certain population is reached, continued growth in intermediate 'seed' tanks, and finally, transfer to large tanks where the final growth process is conducted. Throughout the process, the biological mass is maintained in a liquid suspension consisting of water, nutrients and the fungus. The subject of the investigation centered on an abnormally high rate of failure of bearings within large electric motors (500 Hp) used for agitation of the organic mass during its final growth process.

Subject Headings: Vibration | Failure analysis | Field tests | Microbes | Biological processes | Forensic engineering | Power outage | Client relationships

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