Are You Mounting Your Accelerometer Properly? By: Ronald Nelson July 21, 2015, 0 Comments

Collecting correct vibration data is the basis of vibrational analysis. However, during this process one of the most fundamental concepts can often be overlooked. It’s common knowledge that properly mounting the accelerometer leads to more reliable data, but where does it start? Surface preparation can easily be disregarded by the inexperienced engineer, but it is literally the foundation of the mounting process. If the surface is not prepared properly, the effects on the data can be substantial. No matter the method of mounting, the outcome will depend on the type of surface and how it is prepared.

The preparing of the surface is as significant to the mounting process as the method of mounting the accelerometer itself. The surface will directly affect the frequency response at any frequency level. Special attention should always be taken to ensure a flush mating between the sensor and surface. Nicks, divots, scratches, or other deformations of the mounting surface, or the sensor surface, will affect the frequency response produced by the sensor. It is advised that whenever possible a flat, precision-machined surface is used. A thin layer of light lubricant compound is also recommended as it will improve transmissibility, filling voids with nearly incompressible fluid and thereby increasing the stiffness of the joint. This is especially relevant when measuring at frequencies above 2 kHz, at which any changes in resonance have a significant effect on measurements.

Need help choosing a mounting technique? View our Mounting Guide.