Magnetic bearing, vibration testing, friction, wind turbine
Demands for sustainable energy have resulted in increased interest in wind turbines. Thus, despite widespread economic difficulties, global installed wind power increased by over 20% in 2011 alone. Recently, magnetic bearing technology has been proposed to improve wind turbine performance by mitigating vibration and reducing frictional losses. While magnetic bearing has been shown to reduce friction in other applications, little data has been presented to establish its effect on vibration and friction in wind turbines. Accordingly, this study provides a functional method for experimentally evaluating the effect of a magnetic bearing on the vibration and efficiency characteristics of a wind turbine, along with associated results and conclusions. The magnetic bearing under examination is a passive, concentric ring design. Vibration levels, dominant frequency components, and efficiency results are reported for the bearing as tested in two systems: a precision test fixture, and a small commercially available wind turbine. Data is also presented for a geometrically equivalent ball bearing, providing a benchmark for the magnetic bearing’s performance. The magnetic bearing is conclusively shown to reduce frictional losses as predicted by the original hypothesis. However, while reducing vibration in the precision test fixture, the magnetic bearing demonstrates increased vibration in the small wind turbine. This is explained in terms of the stiffness and damping of the passive test bearing. Thus, magnetic bearing technology promises to improve wind turbine performance, provided that application specific stiffness and damping characteristics are considered in the bearing design.
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Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (M.S.M.E.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Mechanical Engineering; Computer Aided Mechanical Engineering
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Engineering and Computer Science, Engineering and Computer Science -- Dissertations, Academic
Vorwaller, Mark Ryan, "The Effect Of Magnetic Bearing On The Vibration And Friction Of A Wind Turbine" (2012). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2248.