“Non-contact microphone array for structural health diagnostics combined with active noise and vibration cancellation for wind turbine nacelle machinery”
Research area: H2020-FTIPilot-2015-1 – “Fast Track Innovation”
Project start date: [2016-03-01]
Project reference: 701002
The project goal is to establish the feasibility of the innovative use of a non-contact microphone array for structural health diagnostics by noise detection combined with active noise cancellation, for all the rotating machinery within an onshore wind turbine nacelle.
The product developed in the project will be the
ACMWind solution that is a bespoke, non‐intrusive, acoustic‐analysis CM system, which utilises an acoustic sensor array to detect faults in drivetrain components at an early stage.
The rotating machinery in the nacelle has been shown to be responsible for over the 50% of wind turbine downtime. The CMDRIVE project aims to address this situation. Therefore the CMDRIVE system will potentially reduce downtime and the associated lost revenue costs by 50%.
The twin goals of the CMDRIVE project are to:
- Extend the lifetime and improve the operational efficiency of all the rotating components within the nacelle of a wind turbine
- Reduce the environmental noise levels caused by the turbine machinery vibration, in order to take into account the widespread environmental concerns expressed by residents in the close vicinity of wind farms.
These goals will be met by an integral condition monitoring and active noise control process.
The first solution that uses airborne emissions to assess the integrity of wind turbine drivetrains
The ACMwind solution is a bespoke, non‐intrusive, acoustic‐analysis CM system, which utilises an acoustic sensor array to detect faults in drivetrain components at an early stage. The developed non‐contact sensor array consists of a group of acoustic pressure sensors arranged in a manner which allow for easy installation and set‐up. This acoustic array is capable of detecting the sound-borne emissions from the different components of the drivetrain including main bearing, gearbox and generator. Vibrations from all the rotating components within the nacelle are monitored through the airborne noise.
Additionally, the signal processing algorithm can differentiate the origin of the sound, and thus prescribe the defect to the faulty piece of machinery (gearbox, bearings and so on). The designed software will then automatically recognise the structural health signature of each monitored component from analysis of the frequency and time dependence of the acoustic array responses. The software also allows for both noise and vibration reduction within the turbine components. The complete system therefore provides continuous, non‐intrusive, health monitoring of the wind turbine drive‐train, combined with active noise cancellation algorithms. The distinct, quantitative history of the structural integrity of the machine components will allow operators to estimate the time left until failure.
THE MICROPHONE ARRAY IS A CONTACTLESS SOLUTION. THEREFORE THE INSTALLATION OF THE SYSTEM DOES NOT REVOKE THE INITIAL OEM WARRANTY OF THE DRIVE-TRAIN COMPONENTS
THE SECRET BEHIND ACMWIND IS THE USE OF MICROPHONES WHICH ARE INEXPENSIVE COMPARED WITH THE WIDESPREAD ACCELEROMETERS
RELIABLE FAULT DIAGNOSIS!
ACMWIND IS HIGHLY RELIABLE SOLUTION DESIGNED TO REDUCE THE DOWN-TIME OF WIND TURBINES LEADING TO CONSIDERABLE SAVINGS
ACMWIND CAN BE ADAPTED TO THE SPECIFIC NEEDS OF THE CUSTOMER TO DELIVER A HIGH-QUALITY SOLUTION FOR WIND TURBINE DRIVE-TRAIN DIAGNOSTICS