Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence Evaluation of Debris from F-18 Engine Oil Filters
JOINT OIL ANALYSIS PROGRAM PENSACOLA FLTECHNICAL SUPPORT CENTER
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Traditionally, the primary analytical instrument that monitors the health of mechanical oil systems in the U.S. Department of Defense DoD and Canadian Department of National Defence CDND is rotrode atomic emission spectroscopy AES. The engine oil filter installed in the F-18 engine captures particles from the engine oil stream as small as 0.3 microns. This phenomenon renders AES surveillance of the F-18 engine oil system ineffective in detecting abnormal wear and impending engine failure. The debris that is extracted from the F-18 engine oil filter and captured on external filter media contains all the information necessary to detect abnormal wear and engine failure in the oil wetted sections of the F-18 engine. However, the debris is not in a suitable form to be analyzed by AES and requires considerable effort, time and hazardous chemicals to transform the debris into a form suitable for analysis by AES. A method has been developed at the JOAP-TSC that utilizes Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence EDXRF to analyze the debris extracted from the engine oil filter and captured on filter media with little effort. Warning levels for elements have been statistically derived. The EDXRF Filter Debris Analysis FDA method provided 100 or more operating hours of advanced warning of engine failure. In addition, the EDXRF-FDA method can indicate the areas of wear in the engine. The Canadian Forces CF at Trenton in conjunction with GasTops LTD have developed and tested a prototype Deployable Filter Debris Analysis DFDA machine that automatically cleans F-18 engine oil filters. The instrument also segregates particles according to size and ferromagnetic properties. A comparison is made between the evaluations of the particles on the DFDA filter and EDXRF analysis of the same particulate samples.
- Lubricants and Hydraulic Fluids
- Nuclear Physics and Elementary Particle Physics