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 Doug Lucas

Getting it all: Total systems approach increases productivity, not cost of ownership


1/14/2011 8:00:00 AM | Sustainable Solutions for Wind Energy | Comments | Doug Lucas |

The Timken Approach:

Timken has the technical expertise to control and define bearing-performance influencers, such as load dynamics, temperatures, lubrication type and debris contamination. Yet, some are impossible to control. As a result, at Timken, we make it a priority to understand these influences and provide our customers with the appropriate direction and suggestions to help make wind turbines and farms as reliable as possible. To do this, we aim to understand not only the bearing itself, but the entire system and how each part influences the other.

Special Solutions for Special Demands:

Wind-energy applications face demanding conditions. These conditions, in turn, escalate the importance of turbine reliability. A bearing failure in a gearbox or main shaft, for example, typically results in extremely high repair costs. The high cost of wind-turbine downtime due to repair not only affects the productivity of the turbine, but also results in unplanned costs which affect the cost of energy and project viability.

Wind Turbine Systems

The key is to understand the turbine as a system to prevent unnecessary bearing failures. Consequently, we address the complete wind-turbine power train system, not just individual turbine components – and can support a variety of turbine configurations. Here are some examples:

  • Advanced Solutions
  • – Timken uses a proprietary engineering system called Syber Bearing System Analysis. With it, we can select and simulate the bearings in their expected operating environment, including shafts, gears, lubricants and other external loads. The analysis is conducted using a series of comprehensive bearing structural models, resulting in equilibrium calculations down to each rolling element. Bearing performance output results are based on algorithms that are tailored to Timken bearing products and are supported by our strong history of research, testing and modeling of friction management problems.

     

    Fig 1. Example of Modeling the System

    Modeling the Wind-Turbine System

     

     

    Figure 2. Example of Catalog and DIN ISO 281-4: Lifetime Equivalent Summary

     

    Mounted
    Setting
    (mm)

    Main-Shaft
    Bearing
    Position

    Catalog
    L10
    (hrs)

    DIN ISO
    281-4 Life
    (hrs)

    Max. Contact
    Stress
    (MPa)

    0.10 PL

    Upwind TRB

    320,000

    3,015,000

    1,212

    0.10 PL

    Downwind TRB

    727,000

    6,753,000

    1,001

     

     

    Figure 3. Timken Adjusted Life & Maximum Race Stress: Lifetime Equivalent Summary

     

    Mounted
    Setting
    (mm)

    Main-Shaft
    Bearing
    Position

    Timken Analysis

    L10a
    (hours)

    Max. Stress
    (Mpa)

    Min. Load Zone
    (degrees) *

    Min. Lambda
    Ratio

    Min. Safety
    Factor (Stress)

    Min. Safety
    Factor (C/P)

    0.10 PL

    Upwind

    >1.5E6

    1,205

    111

    1.10

    14.7

    15.0

    0.10 PL

    Downwind

    >1.5E6

    885

    189

    1.39

    22.4

    23.9

     

     

    Figure 4. Extreme Load Summary

     

    Mounted
    Setting
    (mm)

    Main-Shaft
    Bearing
    Position

    Minimum
    Safety
    Factor (Stress)

    Minimum
    Safety
    Factor (C/P)

    0.10 PL

    Upwind TRB

    5.0

    5.2

    0.10 PL

    Downwind TRB

    6.5

    5.3

     

     

    Figure 5. Live versus Setting Curve

     

    Life vs. Setting Curve

     

     

    Figure 6. Roller Load Zones and Stress Plots

     

    Roller load zones and stress plots

     

     

  • Engineering Expertise
  • – We couple these strong engineering and analytical tools with more than 110 years of real-life knowledge and experience to complement our total system approach. Because of close customer collaboration and on-going technical innovations, we are able to develop new products for use in wind turbines. These include UltraWind® tapered roller bearings, wear-resistant bearings and lubrication and sealing systems.

  • Global Network
  • – Additionally, because supply chain constraints can impact bearing availability, we have a global manufacturing footprint that allows us to supply most products locally which simplifies logistics.

  • Lifecycle Perspective
  • – Lastly, Timken is there to help maximize equipment performance throughout the entire bearing lifecycle. For turbine operators, this means a full range of Timken-provided support, from replacement bearings and upgraded solutions to remanufacturing services, condition monitoring and lubrication systems. Plus, our global service engineering network can provide on-site troubleshooting, technical assistance and training.


    That’s the Timken total system approach – an understanding of your system requirements, not just of your bearing requirements. With it, we believe we can bring you improved reliability and reduced total cost of ownership.


    Look for much more to come to about our new, innovative products and services designed to help your machinery perform longer and more efficiently.


    What do you think: Can Timken's total system approach help you?



     

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