Assessment of Vibration Signals from Micro-Scale Wind Turbine Gearboxes for Condition Evaluation

Chandile, Sanchit Balasaheb, Onsy, Ahmed orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-0803-5374 and Sherrington, Ian orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-1283-9850 (2018) Assessment of Vibration Signals from Micro-Scale Wind Turbine Gearboxes for Condition Evaluation. In: LUBMAT2018, 5th & 6th June 2018, San Sebastian Spain. (Unpublished)

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Condition monitoring (CM) of wind turbines is frequently used as an approach to track developing problems and schedule maintenance, thus reducing damage and downtime. To do this effectively, it is crucial to select the correct CM technique to identify the required maintenance action.

This project uses two helical gearboxes typical of a small (micro-scale) wind turbine, deployed in a “back to back” configuration in a test apparatus .One of these gearboxes in is good condition and the other has had one tooth damaged by grinding the tooth tip on the outside helix. The apparatus allows the collection of vibration data which can be used to characterise the condition of the gear teeth. This paper will present examples of data, collected from both the damaged and un-damaged gearboxes and demonstrate how signal processing can be used to identify this damage feature and aid in characterising the state of each gearbox.

The long-term aim of this project is to exploit the exponential improvements in computer technology, advanced sensors and actuators to develop an intelligent gearbox. By integrating sensors, a control system and actuators into a gearbox an adaptable system can be created to continuously monitor itself and automatically take corrective action to autonomously mitigate the development of a fault. The aim is to improve the operational reliability of gearboxes and reduce maintenance costs in wind turbine operation.

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