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Title: Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox 3 Planet Bearing Calibration

Abstract

The Gearbox Reliability Collaborative gearbox was redesigned to improve its load-sharing characteristics and predicted fatigue life. The most important aspect of the redesign was to replace the cylindrical roller bearings with preloaded tapered roller bearings in the planetary section. Similar to previous work, the strain gages installed on the planet tapered roller bearings were calibrated in a load frame. This report describes the calibration tests and provides the factors necessary to convert the measured units from dynamometer testing to bearing loads, suitable for comparison to engineering models.

Authors:
 [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Wind and Water Technologies Office (EE-4W)
OSTI Identifier:
1349210
Report Number(s):
NREL/TP-5000-67370
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
17 WIND ENERGY; gearbox; wind energy; Gearbox Reliability Collaborative; calibration tests; dynamometer

Citation Formats

Keller, Jonathan. Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox 3 Planet Bearing Calibration. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1349210.
Keller, Jonathan. Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox 3 Planet Bearing Calibration. United States. doi:10.2172/1349210.
Keller, Jonathan. Fri . "Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox 3 Planet Bearing Calibration". United States. doi:10.2172/1349210. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1349210.
@article{osti_1349210,
title = {Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox 3 Planet Bearing Calibration},
author = {Keller, Jonathan},
abstractNote = {The Gearbox Reliability Collaborative gearbox was redesigned to improve its load-sharing characteristics and predicted fatigue life. The most important aspect of the redesign was to replace the cylindrical roller bearings with preloaded tapered roller bearings in the planetary section. Similar to previous work, the strain gages installed on the planet tapered roller bearings were calibrated in a load frame. This report describes the calibration tests and provides the factors necessary to convert the measured units from dynamometer testing to bearing loads, suitable for comparison to engineering models.},
doi = {10.2172/1349210},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Fri Mar 24 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Fri Mar 24 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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  • NREL has initiated the Gearbox Reliability Collaborative (GRC) to investigate the root cause of the low wind turbine gearbox reliability. The GRC follows a multi-pronged approach based on a collaborative of manufacturers, owners, researchers and consultants. The project combines analysis, field testing, dynamometer testing, condition monitoring, and the development and population of a gearbox failure database. At the core of the project are two 750kW gearboxes that have been redesigned and rebuilt so that they are representative of the multi-megawatt gearbox topology currently used in the industry. These gearboxes are heavily instrumented and are tested in the field and onmore » the dynamometer. This report discusses the bearing calibrations of the gearboxes.« less
  • The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Gearbox Reliability Collaborative (GRC) is a project investigating gearbox reliability primarily through testing and modeling. Previous dynamometer testing focused upon acquiring measurements in the planetary section of the test gearbox. Prior to these tests, the strain gages installed on the planetary bearings were calibrated in a load frame.
  • This document describes the Phase 3 test plan for the Gearbox Reliability Collaborative Gearbox #3. The primary test objective is to measure the planetary load sharing characteristics in the same conditions as the original gearbox design. If the measured load-sharing characteristics are close to the design model, the projected three-times improvement in planetary section predicted fatigue life and the efficacy of preloaded tapered roller bearings in mitigating the planetary bearing fatigue failure mode will have been demonstrated.
  • Many gearboxes in wind turbines do not achieve their expected design life; they do, however, commonly meet or exceed the design criteria specified in current standards in the gear, bearing, and wind turbine industry as well as third-party certification criteria. The cost of gearbox replacements and rebuilds, as well as the downtime associated with these failures, increases the cost of wind energy. In 2007, the U.S. Department of Energy established the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Gearbox Reliability Collaborative (GRC). Its goals are to understand the root causes of premature gearbox failures and to improve their reliability. The GRC ismore » examining a hypothesis that the gap between design-estimated and actual wind turbine gearbox reliability is caused by underestimation of loads, inaccurate design tools, the absence of critical elements in the design process, or insufficient testing. This report describes the recently completed tests of GRC Gearbox 3 in the National Wind Technology Center dynamometer and documents any modifications to the original test plan. In this manner, it serves as a guide for interpreting the publicly released data sets with brief analyses to illustrate the data. The primary test objective was to measure the planetary load-sharing characteristics in the same conditions as the original GRC gearbox design. If the measured load-sharing characteristics are close to the design model, the projected improvement in planetary section fatigue life and the efficacy of preloaded TRBs in mitigating the planetary bearing fatigue failure mode will have been demonstrated. Detailed analysis of that test objective will be presented in subsequent publications.« less
  • Gearboxes in wind turbines have not been achieving their expected design life even though they commonly meet or exceed the design criteria specified in current design standards. One of the basic premises of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Gearbox Reliability Collaborative (GRC) is that the low gearbox reliability results from the absence of critical elements in the design process or insufficient design tools. Key goals of the GRC are to improve design approaches and analysis tools and to recommend practices and test methods resulting in improved design standards for wind turbine gearboxes that lower the cost of energy (COE)more » through improved reliability. The GRC uses a combined gearbox testing, modeling and analysis approach, along with a database of information from gearbox failures collected from overhauls and investigation of gearbox condition monitoring techniques to improve wind turbine operations and maintenance practices. Testing of Gearbox 2 (GB2) using the two-speed turbine controller that has been used in prior testing. This test series will investigate non-torque loads, high-speed shaft misalignment, and reproduction of field conditions in the dynamometer. This test series will also include vibration testing using an eddy-current brake on the gearbox's high speed shaft.« less