At Gas Turbine Controls, we’re all about extending the life of your legacy controls. Not only are we your ultimate source for GE and Excitation, but we also provide parts and services for other control systems as well, such as the Bently Nevada 3500 series.
Before being purchased by GE in 2002, Bently Nevada had already carved out a deep-rooted legacy in rotor dynamics, which is why we wanted to share five facts you may not know about the history of Bently Nevada:
1) Donald E Bently Founded His Company in 1956 From His Garage
That’s right: the Bently Scientific Company was opened out of “Don” E Bently’s garage in 1956. Bently’s background in aviation exposed him to electronic sensing technologies for aircraft control systems, and he quickly determined their commercial uses elsewhere. He made and sold eddy-current products out of his garage, which eventually transformed into the Bently Nevada Corporation in Nevada. There, the “Bently probe” was created.
2) The “Bently Probe” Revolutionised Measuring Vibration
Before the 1960s, there was no way to directly observe the vibratory motion of a machine’s shaft. The “Bently probe,” a common term for Bently’s innovative eddy-current proximity probes, gave users access to direct observation of shaft vibratory motion. This became the preferred way to assess vibration and overall mechanical condition on most compressors, turbines, pumps, electric motors, generators, and any other rotating equipment that exceeded 1,000 HP.
Bently further improved his sensors with monitoring instrumentation that could give visuals to reflect the amount of vibration for rotating machinery. He included alarm levels that assessed if the vibration levels were excessive, serving to alert and shutdown the machine when necessary.
3) GE Energy Bought Bently Nevada in 2002, After it Had Grown to 100 Offices in 42 Countries
Needless to say, Bently Nevada had grown a lot from its humble beginnings by the time of GE’s* acquisition. By 2002, it had spread from one garage to a full-fledged company with 100 offices in 42 countries. The company had over 2,100 employees worldwide and global sales exceeding $235 million.
Bently Nevada’s status as an industry leader in rotor dynamics and an established manufacturer of machinery monitoring and diagnostics devices made it a desirable acquisition by GE. The deal created an opportunity for what Don Bently called a “new dimension” of products and services for GE.
4) The Bently Nevada 3500 Series is the Result of 50+ Years of Knowledge
The Bently Nevada 3500 was predated by about fifty years of innovation: the 5000 series launched in 1965 and lasted through 1998, and was followed by the 1700 series (1973-1998), the 9000 series (1975-2003), the 3300 series (1988-2003), and finally, the Bently Nevada 3500 series in 1995.
Each generation of Bently Nevada improved upon the previous one, and the 3500 series took into account all its preceding iterations to create a comprehensive and enhanced product and process.
5) Need Bently Nevada 3500 Parts? GTC’s Got Your Back
AT GTC, we’ve got an extensive inventory of Bently Nevada 3500 spares, including chassis, vibration and position cards, relay modules, speed/over speed monitors, reciprocating compressor monitors, and communication gateway.
With both unused and remanufactured options available, we supply you with a 12-month warranty against defects and provide a test and certify service, or test and repair service, which also includes a 12-month warranty.