Stress Indicators Incorporated has released SmartBolts®, which enable users to visually check that critical bolts are properly tightened.
SmartBolts are the fastener of choice for the largest data centers worldwide. SmartBolts keep critical electrical busway connections properly clamped and protect from potential power outages and costly downtime.
Using proprietary technology, SmartBolts accurately display bolt tension by measuring the elongation or stretch of a bolt and converting it into a visual indication. As the bolt is tightened, the indicator on the bolt head turns from bright red to black, corresponding to the degree of bolt tension.
By measuring tension, SmartBolts allow a direct and accurate assessment of bolt tightness. On the other hand, torque, as measured with a torque wrench (or break off bolt), is typically used in the field to determine the tightness of a bolted joint.
Unfortunately, torque only measures rotational force and does not always provide an accurate indication of tightness. Torque can be affected by many variables, including rust, lubrication, bolt size, thread size, etc. and this can lead to improperly installed bolts.
Achieving proper bridge joint bolt tension during installation of electrical busway is critical. Loose joint bolts are a direct cause of downtime. Just a few minutes without service can cost a technology company thousands of dollars, so it’s critical to keep the power flowing.
Visual inspections with SmartBolts are safe and efficient. Users can spot a bolt that is becoming loose from a few feet away — without the need to use a torque wrench and BEFORE outages occur. And since systems don’t need to be powered down to perform bolt inspections, SmartBolts can reduce maintenance costs by as much as 80%.