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We talked energy efficiency with some major players in the lubricants industry— but with a focus on their products’ impact regarding energy efficiency of gears and gearboxes in wind turbines.
The turbines are still spinning. They’re spinning on large wind farms in the Great Plains, offshore in the Atlantic and even underwater where strong tidal currents offer new energy solutions. These turbines spin regularly while politicians and policy makers— tied up in discussions on tax incentives, economic recovery and a lot of finger pointing—sit idle. Much like the auto and aerospace industries of years past, renewable energy is coping with its own set of growing pains. Analysts still feel confident that clean energy will play a significant role in the future of manufacturing—it’s just not going to play the role envisioned four to five years ago.
This article describes some of the most important tests for prototypes conducted at Winergy AG during the product development process. It will demonstrate that the measurement results on the test rig for load distribution are in accordance with the turbine measurements.
The United States’ long-held dream of energy independence—as in cheap, clean, free of overseas extortion and renewable energy—could very well be realized in part by the country-wide development of wind turbines...
Gear flank breakage can be observed on edge zone-hardened gears. It occurs, for example, on bevel gears for water turbines, on spur gears for wind energy converters and on single- and double-helical gears for other industrial applications.
Big gears and wind turbines go together like bees and honey, peas and carrots, bread and butter and—well, you get the idea. Wind isn’t just big right now, it’s huge. The wind industry means tremendous things for the energy dependent world we live in and especially big things for gear manufacturers and other beleaguered American industries.
Historically, wind turbine gearbox failures have plagued the industry. Yet an effective oil analysis program will increase the reliability and availability of your machinery, while minimizing maintenance costs associated with oil change-outs, labor, repairs and downtime. Practical action steps are presented here to improve reliability.
Faithful Gear Technology readers may recall that our July 2009 issue contained an update of the deliberations provided by Bill Bradley. Now, almost two years later, there is an ISO/IEC wind turbine gearbox standard out for draft international standard ballot (ballot closes 2011-05-17).
Having outlasted the worldwide Great Recession, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) forecasts a constant growth in wind energy, i.e.: "increase in worldwide capacity to 460,000 MW by 2015."
The wind turbine industry has been plagued with gearbox failures, which cause repair costs, legal expenses, lost energy production and environmental pollution.
Uncertainty casts a shadow over future business opportunities for manufacturers serving the new energy markets.
When Belgium-based Hansen Transmissions was under the ownership of Invensys plc in the late 1990s, the parent company was dropping not-so-subtle hints that the industrial gearbox manufacturer was not part of its long-term plans. Yet Hansen’s CEO Ivan Brems never dreamed that, less than a decade later, he would be working for an Indian company.
Although typically considered a late bloomer in the call to wind energy arms, the United States is now the number one wind power producer in the world with over 25,000 MW installed by the end of 2008, according to the Global Wind Energy Council in January 2009.
The global wind energy market has seen average growth rates of 28 percent over the last 10 years, according to the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), creating major challenges for the component supply industry. GWEC also forecasts an average growth rate of 22 percent for the next five years, which if realized, will continue to put pressure on suppliers of turbine components.
It’s not too often a trade show so far surpasses organizers’ expectations for size that it must be relocated. This was just the dilemma the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) faced with the Windpower 2009 Conference and Exhibition, which was originally scheduled to take place in Minneapolis, but will now be held at McCormick Place, Chicago.
This article shows the newest developments to reduce overall cycle time in grinding wind power gears, including the use of both profile grinding and threaded wheel grinding.
Industrial gear standards have been used to support reliability through the specification of requirements for design, manufacturing and verification. The consensus development of an international wind turbine gearbox standard is an example where gear products can be used in reliable mechanical systems today. This has been achieved through progressive changes in gear technology, gear design methods and the continual development and refinement of gearbox standards.
Recent breakthroughs in profile grinding software are helping Anderson Precision Gears and others meet wind power’s insatiable appetite for faster production of large, high-quality gears.
Lamentations continue—legitimately so—over the second-citizen status of manufacturing in the United States. The need undoubtedly continues for renewed support by government and educators for making things here once again...
Long before oil, climate change and energy demand were making headlines in Washington, Minnesota State Auditor Rebecca Otto and her husband installed a wind energy system on their property in Minnesota.
"An industrial business with a very important growth potential for the next decade." That's the wind energy as described by Ivan Brems of gear manufacturer Hansen Transmissions International.
It seems that nothing can hold back the power of the wind—unless, of course, it's the availability of rugged, reliable, specially designed gearboxes. How Gleason is Keeping up with Demand.
Vibration and noise from wind turbines can be significantly influenced - and therefore reduced - by selecting suitable gearing modifications. New options provided by manufacturers of machine tools and grinding machines, and especially state-of-the-art machines and controls, provide combined gearing modifications - or topological gearing corrections - that can now be reliably machined. Theoretical investigations of topological modifications are discussed here with the actual machining and their possible use.
In the wide, wide world of moving parts, the gears required for the big jobs—the really big jobs—often experience big problems. Proper lubrication of these gears is paramount in industrial applications such as wind turbines, kilns, sugar mills, crushers, heavy construction, offshore drilling rigs, mining and quarrying.
Gear manufacturers are moving into an era that will see changes in both engineering practices and industry standards as new end-products evolve. Within the traditional automotive industry, carbon emission reduction legislation will drive the need for higher levels of efficiency and growth in electric and hybrid vehicles. Meanwhile, the fast growing market of wind turbines is already opening up a whole new area of potential for gearbox manufacturers, but this industry is one that will demand reliability, high levels of engineering excellence and precision manufacturing.
The main theme of this article is high-capacity, high-speed load gears in a power transmission range between 35 MW and 100 MW for generators and turbo-compressors driven by gas or steam turbines.
News Items About turbines
1 GE to Supply Canada with 660 New Wind Turbines (January 22, 2004)
GE Energy has been selected to supply up to 660 wind turbines, totaling 990 megawatts of wind-generated electricity for eight projects to... Read News
2 IQwind and Guascor Partner to Commercialize Variable IQGear Technology for Wind Turbines (September 10, 2009)
IQwind and Guascor announced that they will partner to commercialize and bring to market the IQGear, a high efficiency variable gearbox f... Read News