Project flow diagram Copyright: © CWD

Testing cycles to determine the robustness of wind turbine gearboxes

The development of wind turbines is a great challenge due to its complex design, permanently changing loads and the dynamic coupling of the structure-mechanical components. The primary goal is the design reliability because unpredictable failures lead to high costs of repairs. A standard to determine the absence of errors is available but still unpredictable failures are seen, especially in the main gearbox. The longest down time is caused by bearing failures, followed by failures of the gears. These failures are not caused by known mechanisms of fatigue but by mechanisms of fatigue, which cannot be described mathematically (i.e. tribo-chemical reactions) and errors in assembly and maintenance.

This project develops a methodology to determine testing cycles to describe the robustness of gearboxes against specific failures. Direct and indirect triggers for failures are derived from the known but mathematically non-describable failures. Indirect triggers of failure are caused by various loads. After determining these loads testing cycles are derived and validated on the test bench at the Center for Wind Power Drives.


01.10.2017 - 30.09.2021

Assoziierte Projektpartner:

ConverterTec Deutschland GmbH Flender International GmbH Schaeffler Technologies AG & Co. KG Siemens Vestas A/S ZF Friedrichshafen AG

Project funded by:

Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy

Project promoted by:

Projektträger Jülich