With Measuring, Testing, Signalling Or Inspection Means Patents (Class 416/61)
  • Publication number: 20120243988
    Abstract: An active sensing system for wind turbines is described. The sensing system may include a plurality of ports, a local sensing device and a load mitigation device and may be operably coupled to a control system. The plurality of ports, local sensing device, and load mitigation device may be operably coupled and configured to monitor air pressure on wind turbine blades, determine if proper sensing operation is occurring, and eradicate an obstruction if proper sensing operation is being prevented by the obstruction. Associated methods performing the sensing and eradication of the obstruction including purging and deicing are disclosed. Wind turbines and wind turbine blades with the active sensing system are also described.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 25, 2011
    Publication date: September 27, 2012
    Applicant: FRONTIER WIND, LLC
    Inventors: Leigh Zalusky, Thomas Jay Green, Joshua P. Karch
  • Publication number: 20120243989
    Abstract: An active sensing system for wind turbines is described. The sensing system may include a plurality of ports, a local sensing device and a load mitigation device and may be operably coupled to a control system. The plurality of ports, local sensing device, and load mitigation device may be operably coupled and configured to monitor air pressure on wind turbine blades, determine if proper sensing operation is occurring, and eradicate an obstruction if proper sensing operation is being prevented by the obstruction. Associated methods performing the sensing and eradication of the obstruction including purging and deicing are disclosed. Wind turbines and wind turbine blades with the active sensing system are also described.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 25, 2011
    Publication date: September 27, 2012
    Applicant: FRONTIER WIND, LLC
    Inventors: Edward A. Mayda, Jonathon P. Baker, Leigh Zalusky, Thomas Jay Green
  • Publication number: 20120243993
    Abstract: An adjustable height pressure sensing port arrangement is provided. In some example, the pressure sensing port may be arranged on an airfoil, such as wind turbine blade. The pressure sensing port arrangement may include a pressure sensing port body and a spring arranged within the port body. The pressure sensing port arrangement may further include a pressure sensing port arranged vertically above the spring and a rotatable capture disk arranged vertically above the port. The capture disk may be rotated to adjust a height of the capture disk. Further, the spring may be arranged to force an alignment feature of the pressure sensing port into an alignment feature on the rotatable capture disk in order to secure the port and capture disk in place.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 25, 2011
    Publication date: September 27, 2012
    Applicant: Frontier Wind, LLC
    Inventors: Leigh Zalusky, Erick Rickards
  • Publication number: 20120237346
    Abstract: A method for alleviating rotor asymmetric loads in a variable-speed wind turbine having pitch and torque control means comprising the following steps: providing a control law that determines the pitch to be applied individually to each wind turbine blade for counteracting rotor asymmetric loads (such as wind shear, upflow, yaw misalignment) using wind speed and wind direction measurements at the wind turbine, values of the wind features that cause rotor asymmetric loads and configuration parameters of the wind turbine (whether real-time values or statistical values at the wind turbine site), said pitch to be added to the collective pitch ?0; implementing said control law in the wind turbine control means. The invention also refers to a wind turbine control system arranged for implementing said method.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 12, 2012
    Publication date: September 20, 2012
    Inventors: Octavio HERNANDEZ MASCARELL, Carlos Pizarro De La Fuente, Jaime Suarez Aizpun, Jorn Klaas Gruber
  • Patent number: 8267655
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a method for controlling a wind turbine, the wind turbine including at least one movable portion which is movable during operation of the wind turbine and at least one movable portion device including at least one of a movable portion transmitter or a movable portion receiver, the movable portion transmitter or the movable portion receiver being disposed at the least one movable portion; the method including: at least one of sending to or receiving from at least three reference points at least one signal by at least one of the movable portion transmitter or movable portion receiver; and determining at least one operational parameter of the wind turbine depending on at least one characteristic of the at least one received signal. Further the present disclosure relates to a wind turbine arrangement and a system for controlling a wind turbine, comprising a controller of the wind turbine and a movable portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Friedrich Loh, Hartmut Scholte-Wassink, Till Hoffmann, Juergen Esser
  • Patent number: 8267652
    Abstract: A rotary wing aircraft including a vehicle vibration control system. The vehicle vibration control system includes a rotating hub mounted vibration control system, the rotating hub mounted vibration control system mounted to the rotating rotary wing hub with the rotating hub mounted vibration control system rotating with the rotating rotary wing hub driven to rotate about a rotating hub center Z axis by a gear box transmission. The vehicle vibration control system includes a rotary wing aircraft member sensor for outputting rotary wing aircraft member data correlating to the relative rotation of the rotating rotary wing hub member rotating about the rotating hub center Z axis relative to the nonrotating body, a first nonrotating body vibration sensor outputting first nonrotating body vibration sensor data correlating to vibrations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Lord Corporation
    Inventors: Mark R. Jolly, Paul Black
  • Publication number: 20120230820
    Abstract: A method is provided for detecting a blade pitch angle unbalance of a rotor blade system of a wind turbine, the rotor blade system rotating around a rotor rotation axis. The method includes yawing the rotor rotation axis about a yawing axis transverse to the rotor rotation axis. The method also includes obtaining a load signal indicative of a load due to the yawing. The method further includes analyzing the load signal regarding a frequency component of the load signal, and detecting the blade pitch angle unbalance based on the analyzed load signal.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 21, 2012
    Publication date: September 13, 2012
    Inventors: Ib Frydendal, Johnny Rieper
  • Publication number: 20120232808
    Abstract: A propeller system with two propellers, arranged one behind the other and separated by a propeller gap, respectively comprising a propeller hub and at least one rotating force measuring device, comprises at least two differential pressure sensors and an evaluation unit. The rotating force measuring devices are mechanically connected to the respective propellers and are adapted for determining the individual thrust force of each propeller. At least one of the said differential pressure sensors is arranged on or in each propeller and is adapted for measuring a differential pressure between the propeller gap and the respectively opposing side of the propeller. By adding the measured individual thrust forces and by subtracting the gap area forces that are based on the respectively measured differential pressures, the evaluation unit can determine a precise overall thrust force for the propeller system.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 8, 2012
    Publication date: September 13, 2012
    Applicant: Airbus Operations GmbH
    Inventors: Michael Huhnd, Erik Goldhahn, Stephan Zipp, Alberto Villa
  • Patent number: 8262354
    Abstract: The present invention provides a connecting device adapted for connecting a hub and a main shaft of a wind turbine. The connecting device comprises at least one sensor bolt connecting the hub and the main shaft, wherein a stress detection element is mounted inside the sensor bolt. The stress detection element is adapted to detect a length variation of the sensor bolt and to output a sensor signal indicative of the length variation of the sensor bolt. A signal output device is used for outputting the sensor signal which is indicative of a stress applied to the sensor bolt.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventor: Till Hoffmann
  • Publication number: 20120224966
    Abstract: Some examples relate to a system for monitoring the condition of rotor blades at wind turbines. A plurality of sensor nodes can be coupled to a rotor blade. A respective at least one sensor can be present at the individual sensor nodes for the spatially resolved detection of vibrations and/or acoustic waves of the rotor blade and the sensor nodes can be connected via optical fibers to a central supply and reception unit. A light source can be present at the central supply and reception unit and electromagnetic radiation can be conducted from it via an optical fiber to a photovoltaic converter with which the received electromagnetic radiation can be converted into electric energy. The electric energy can be utilized.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 2, 2012
    Publication date: September 6, 2012
    Applicant: Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Angewandten Forschung E.V.
    Inventors: Bernd Frankenstein, Bianca Weihnacht, Ralf Rieske, Daniel Fischer
  • Patent number: 8257040
    Abstract: A wind power generation system includes a wind turbine at a wind turbine location, a measuring device for providing a wind condition signal at a test location, a sensor for providing a wind condition signal at the wind turbine, and a controller. The controller is configured for receiving the wind condition signals, using a wind correlation database and the wind condition signal at the test location for providing a wind condition estimation at the wind turbine location, obtaining a difference between the wind condition signal at the wind turbine location and the wind condition estimate at the wind turbine location, and using the difference for adjusting the wind condition signal at the wind turbine location.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 4, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Weiguo Chen, Jiyang Xia, Lei Zhao
  • Patent number: 8246304
    Abstract: A method of determining at least one rotation parameter of a wind turbine rotor rotating with a rotation speed and a phase is provided. The method includes: measuring an effective centrifugal force acting in a first pre-determined direction, which is defined in a co-ordinate system rotating synchronously with the rotor, on at least one reference object located in or at the rotor, establishing a first angular frequency representing the rotation speed of the rotor on the basis of variations in the measured effective centrifugal force due to gravitational force, establishing a second angular frequency representing the rotation speed of the rotor by use of at least one yaw rate gyro, and establishing the value of the rotation speed as the rotational parameter by correcting the second angular frequency by comparing it to the first angular frequency.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 21, 2012
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Per Egedal
  • Patent number: 8240990
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for reducing asymmetric rotor load in a wind turbine includes calculating a time delay for pitching each blade toward feather upon initiation of a shutdown condition. The blades with the larger blade angle begin moving toward feather with an initial pitch rate, while the blade with the smallest blade angle begins moving toward feather with a final pitch rate. Once all the blades have reached approximately an identical blade angle, the blades move simultaneously together to feather at the final pitch rate. By introducing the time delay for pitching the blades having higher blade angles at the final pitch rate, a simple, time-based correction of initial conditions during shutdown reduces the extreme loads on turbine components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 6, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Leonardo Cesar Kammer, Hubert Oing
  • Patent number: 8240991
    Abstract: A method, system and computer program product for operating a wind turbine is disclosed. For operating the wind turbine a set of operational data points are sensed via a sensing module. The set of operational data points may include bending stress values. Based on the bending stress values, a load scenario indicator value may be computed. Further, based on the set of operational data points a loading threshold value may be obtained. At least one operating parameter of the wind turbine is changed if the load scenario indicator value exceeds the loading threshold.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 14, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Matthijs Leonardus Gerardus Boerlage, Leonardo Cesar Kammer
  • Patent number: 8235663
    Abstract: A method, system and article adapted for ultrasonic inspection of the article. The article is disk-shaped and has axially-oriented slots circumferentially spaced from each other at a periphery of the article, with members secured at the periphery of the article such that each member has a retention feature that extends into and engages a corresponding one of the slots so as to secure the members to the slots. Cavities are defined by and between the slots and radially-inward extremities of the retention features within the slots. The inspection method and system entail the use of at least one ultrasonic transducer placed within at least a first of the cavities defined by a first of the slots. The transducer is configured and oriented to perform a diagnostic technique on the article by emitting an ultrasonic signal that intersects an interior surface of a second of the slots immediately adjacent the first slot.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Curtis Wayne Rose, Robert Falsetti, Gary Lamberton
  • Patent number: 8235662
    Abstract: A wind turbine and system for controlling a wind turbine using a nosecone mounted metrology system is disclosed. The wind turbine comprises at least one wind sensor for determining at least one wind characteristic. The wind sensor is mounted on a boom and located at a predetermined distance outward from the wind turbine nosecone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2007
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Ryan M. LeClair, Thomas P. Schmitt, Saskia G. Honoff, Clinton L. Williams, Thomas H. Siebers, Donald M. Rogers, Christopher J. Winslow
  • Patent number: 8234083
    Abstract: A wind turbine rotor blade having a strain sensor system is described. The strain sensor is insensitive to the effect of twisting motions or edge-wise bending on the measurement of the strain. The sensor comprises one or more strain sensing devices arranged in a circular or regular polygon shaped path enclosing a region of the component. In the sensor system, a plurality of strain sensors are spaced longitudinally along a flap-wise axis of the wind turbine rotor blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2012
    Assignee: Vestas Wind Systems A/S
    Inventor: Ib Olesen
  • Patent number: 8221076
    Abstract: A method of controlling at least one wind turbine blade during the stopping process of the rotor in a wind turbine system is disclosed. The method optimizes the control velocity of the process in response to one or more feedback values of the system and/or one or more feedback values from the surroundings of the system by altering the angular pitch velocity from 10°/sec during the initial stage of the stopping process to 5°/sec at the final stage of the stopping process. A control system and a wind turbine as well as use hereof are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2012
    Assignee: Vestas Wind Systems A/S
    Inventors: Ole Mølgaard Jeppesen, John Bengtson, Torben Møller Hansen
  • Patent number: 8222760
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a method for controlling at least one proximity sensor of a wind turbine, the wind turbine comprising a rotor shaft, the at least one proximity sensor being adapted to measure a radial displacement of the rotor shaft; the method includes: providing at least one reference value, detecting an output of the at least one proximity sensor, the output depending on a measured distance by the respective proximity sensor; comparing the detected output of the proximity sensor with at least one reference value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventor: Detlef Menke
  • Publication number: 20120177491
    Abstract: A system for detecting defects in a turbine rotor blade of a combustion turbine engine. The system may include: a turbine rotor blade that includes an insulator coating; a first electrode that is electrically connected to the turbine rotor blade; a second electrode that resides in proximity to the turbine rotor blade; means for inducing a voltage across the first electrode and the second electrode; and means for detecting current flowing between the first electrode and the second electrode.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 10, 2011
    Publication date: July 12, 2012
    Inventors: Gilbert Otto Kraemer, Dullal Ghosh, Bhaskara Rao Atchuta
  • Patent number: 8219356
    Abstract: A device and method for use in detecting anomalies in wind turbines is provided. The method includes monitoring data acquired by at least one sensor in a first wind turbine, wherein the data is calculated to produce a value for a predetermined amount of time, monitoring data acquired by at least one sensor in a grouping of wind turbines similar to the first wind turbine, wherein the monitored data corresponds to the monitored data of the first wind turbine and is combined for a predetermined amount of time, and comparing the monitored data of the first wind turbine with the monitored data of the grouping of wind turbines. The method also includes generating a sensor error if the monitored data of the first wind turbine deviates more than a predetermined amount from the monitored data of the grouping of wind turbines, and displaying the results of the comparison of the monitored data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: John Mihok, Sameh R. Salem, Dhaval Bhalodia, David Korim
  • Patent number: 8215907
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for monitoring an acoustic emission of a wind turbine that includes a rotor blade. The apparatus includes at least one sensor operatively coupled to the wind turbine. The sensor is configured to detect an atmospheric condition. A control system is communicatively coupled to the sensor, and configured to control operation of the wind turbine to adjust the acoustic emission of the wind turbine based on the atmospheric condition.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2009
    Date of Patent: July 10, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Hendrikus J. T. Kooijman, Andreas Petersen, Markus Koschinsky
  • Publication number: 20120171037
    Abstract: A method of assembling a probe assembly is provided. At least one probe is coupled to an annular tube, wherein the tube includes an interior surface and an exterior surface. The tube also includes at least one first opening that extends between the interior and exterior surfaces and at least one second opening that extends between the interior and exterior surfaces. Moreover, at least one annular flange is coupled to the tube. The flange has a substantially elliptical shape that facilitates substantially preventing the relative rotation of the tube.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 3, 2011
    Publication date: July 5, 2012
    Inventors: Prathap Raj R, Kurt Kramer Schleif, Fernando Jorge Casanova
  • Publication number: 20120173172
    Abstract: A system for determining a vibrational frequency of a blade being attached to a structural component of a wind turbine is described. The blade is vibrating within a rotational plane of the rotor. A sensor sensitive to a movement along a sensor direction is placed at the structural component so the sensor direction and the direction of the longitudinal extension of the blade have a fixed angular relationship with respect to each other. The sensor is configured to provide a sensor output signal being indicative for the movement of the structural component along the sensor direction. A data processing unit is connected with the sensor and configured to determine the vibrational frequency of the blade based on the sensor output signal and on the fixed angular relationship. Corresponding wind turbine equipped with such a system, method for determining a vibrational frequency of a blade and computer program are provided.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 12, 2011
    Publication date: July 5, 2012
    Inventors: Hans Laurberg, Johnny Rieper
  • Publication number: 20120171036
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for optically detecting an angle of attack for an airfoil using light detection and ranging (LIDAR). To determine the angle of attack, one or more light beam pulses may be emitted from the leading edge of the airfoil into an (apparently) flowing fluid at various emission angles. The emitted pulses may be backscattered by particles in the fluid, and the backscattered light may be received by a detector at the airfoil. By range gating the returning pulses of backscattered light, a fluid velocity may be determined for each of the emission angles. The angle of attack is identified as the emission angle corresponding to the maximum velocity. A parameter (e.g., pitch or speed) of the airfoil may be controlled based on the angle of attack. In this manner, the airfoil may be manipulated or the shape of the airfoil may be adjusted for increased performance or efficiency.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 30, 2010
    Publication date: July 5, 2012
    Applicant: VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S
    Inventor: Carsten Hein Westergaard
  • Publication number: 20120161446
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for measuring a parameter (e.g., temperature, pressure, strain, or vibration) of at least a portion of a wind turbine generator using distributed sensing with optical fiber technology are provided. Fiber optic technology with distributed sensing offers a fast, low cost solution for measuring the parameter at myriad locations along substantial lengths of optical fiber. In this manner, the health or status of one or more components of the wind turbine generator may be monitored during or after the different stages of fabrication, transportation, site assembly, operation, and repair over time. Furthermore, data from multiple wind turbine generators may be sent to a local control station for processing and monitoring an entire wind farm in real time. Data from multiple wind farms may be transmitted from multiple local control stations to a remote station such that multiple wind farms may be monitored from a single location.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 28, 2010
    Publication date: June 28, 2012
    Applicant: VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S
    Inventors: Shanshan McNeill, Garrett Moran
  • Publication number: 20120163974
    Abstract: Generally, a wind data acquisition system configured to perform wind resource assessments. A system consistent with the present disclosure may provide a cost-effective data acquisition and analysis system useful for performing wind resource assessments. The system may be configured to automatically detect heights and bearings of instrument mounting booms associated with a wind tower. The system may further be configured to improve the accuracy of differential temperature measurements of a wind tower by providing automatic calibration of components used to measure differential temperature.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2011
    Publication date: June 28, 2012
    Inventors: Brendan F. Taylor, Wyatt Drake-Buhr, J. Carl Irving, Dale E. Williams, Robert H. Macklin, Guy S. Kirchhoff
  • Patent number: 8206105
    Abstract: A method for controlling load reduction for a wind turbine rotor with rotor blades comprising an aerodynamic active element responsive to a control signal for modifying its setting is provided. The loads acting on the rotor blades in relation to the rotor's azimuth are detected and individual control signals based on a PI control system are established. Each individual control signal is a complex number containing an amplitude defining the degree of modification of the respective setting and an angle defining the phase of the modification of the respective setting with respect to the rotor's azimuth. The angle of the complex number is corrected by a phase correction factor. The elements are provided with the individual control signals. The input to the PI-control system is a complex load vector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 29, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventor: Per Egedal
  • Publication number: 20120156034
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for monitoring component health in a gearbox of a power generation system. A gearbox has a gear set with relatively-movable components, an armature attached to one of these components, and a magnet attached to another of these components. The armature is subjected to a changing magnetic field from the magnet that generates electrical energy. An electrical device for monitoring component health is inside the gearbox and is powered by the electrical energy received from the armature.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 17, 2010
    Publication date: June 21, 2012
    Applicant: VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S
    Inventors: Anil Nagesh Sabannavar, Jiun Keat Ong
  • Patent number: 8202048
    Abstract: The invention concerns a method of operating a wind turbine, wherein for a reduction of a wind load impacting on the wind turbine the rotational speed of the rotor and/or the electrical power output of the wind turbine are reduced depending on a deviation of the wind speed from the average wind speed. Moreover the invention concerns a wind turbine comprising a calculating unit adjusted for executing the inventive method.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: Siemens Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Henrik Stiesdal, Martin Winther-Jensen
  • Patent number: 8202053
    Abstract: An apparatus includes an optical portion disposed on a carrier portion. The optical portion includes an optical path of and a magneto-sensitive element within the optical path. A light source is disposed on the carrier portion in operative communication with a first end of the optical path, and a photo-detector is disposed on the carrier portion in operative communication with a second end of the optical path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Sebastian Gerhard Maxim Kraemer, Yaru Najem Mendez Hernandez
  • Patent number: 8202049
    Abstract: A system and method are provided to increase efficiency of turbines in wind farms. A sensor is configured to generate a wind map of an inflow of wind. A controller is configured to generate a control signal based the wind map. A pitch adjustment device configured to adjust pitch of a blade of the turbine based on the control signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: Catch the Wind, Inc.
    Inventors: Philip L. Rogers, Frederick C. Belen, Jr., Elizabeth A. Dakin, Priyavadan Mamidipudi
  • Publication number: 20120148400
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method and a system for monitoring an ephemeral event on a vane impeller (3) of an aircraft engine (5), including: acquisition means (7) for acquiring a time signal (S1) relating to movable vanes (31) of the vane impeller (3), processing means (11) for detecting a disturbance in said time signal (S1) with respect to a reference time signal (S0) corresponding to a same flight phase, the disturbed time signal being indicative of an ephemeral event on said vane impeller (3).
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 22, 2011
    Publication date: June 14, 2012
    Applicant: SNECMA
    Inventors: Valerio GEREZ, Serge Blanchard
  • Patent number: 8197207
    Abstract: A method for configuring blades of a wind turbine for low noise generation. The method includes providing at least one noise measuring device. The noise measuring device is arranged and disposed in a position to measure noise of the blades during rotation. The wind turbine is configured to include a rotational trigger, the rotational trigger being arranged to provide a signal at a predetermined rotational position of the wind turbine blades. One or more of the blades is configured with an aerodynamic modifying device. Noise level is measured with the noise measuring device during wind turbine operation. The noise produced by each of the blades is determined. The blades are configured in response to the noise determined for each of the blades. A method for measuring the noise level generated by an individual blade and a wind turbine configured for desired noise level are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Andreas Petersen, Lothar Wittekind, Heiko Kraft
  • Publication number: 20120141275
    Abstract: A monitoring system and associated operational method are operatively configured with a wind turbine for detecting separation of shell members along an edge of a wind turbine rotor blade. The system includes any configuration of sensors disposed within an internal cavity of the rotor blade, with the sensor oriented relative to a leading or trailing edge of the blade and configured to detect a physical characteristic within the blade that is indicative of onset of a separation between the shell members along the monitored edge. A controller is configured to receive signals from the sensor and to initiate an automatic response to a detected separation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2011
    Publication date: June 7, 2012
    Applicant: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Vijayakumar Muppayya Hiremath, Vishal Chandra Harupka, D. Mallikarjuna Reddy
  • Publication number: 20120134809
    Abstract: In one aspect, a system for detecting loads transmitted through a blade root of a rotor blade of a wind turbine is disclosed. The system may include a root attachment assembly configured to couple the blade root to a hub of the wind turbine. The root attachment assembly may include a barrel nut mounted within a portion of the blade root and a root bolt extending from the barrel nut. In addition, the system may include a sensor associated with the root attachment assembly. The sensor may be configured to detect loads transmitted through at least one of the barrel nut and the root bolt.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 6, 2011
    Publication date: May 31, 2012
    Applicant: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Bharat Bagepalli, Nilesh Tralshawala, Aditi Koppikar, Sascha Schieke, Pekka Sipilae
  • Publication number: 20120133143
    Abstract: A lightning strike detector that can promptly detect a lightning strike to ensure safety and can accurately determine the position struck by the lightning with a simple, inexpensive, and highly reliable structure, is provided. The lightning strike detector includes an environment-detecting sensor member that detects a change in the environment of the internal space of a wind turbine blade, serving as a hollow structure, when the wind turbine blade is struck by lightning and is damaged, converts the environmental change into an electrical signal, and outputs the electrical signal; and a control unit (nacelle-side control system and ground-side control system) that receives the electrical signal, judges whether a lightning strike has occurred, and takes countermeasures against the lightning strike.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 25, 2011
    Publication date: May 31, 2012
    Applicant: MITSUBISHI HEAVY INDUSTRIES, LTD.
    Inventors: Musashi KIMURA, Takehiro NAKA, Kentaro HAYASHI
  • Publication number: 20120134811
    Abstract: A system for detecting loads in a wind turbine is disclosed. In one aspect, the system may generally include a shaft, first and second pillow blocks receiving portions of the shaft and a bedplate supporting the first and second pillow blocks. The second pillow block may be spaced axially apart from the first pillow block. Additionally, the system may include at least one sensor configured to directly or indirectly detect loads transmitted through the bedplate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 6, 2011
    Publication date: May 31, 2012
    Applicant: GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
    Inventors: Bharat Bagepalli, Pekka Sipilae
  • Patent number: 8186948
    Abstract: A wind energy plant with a nacelle, a rotor, which features at least one rotor blade adjustable in its blade pitch angle, a central control device for controlling the wind energy plant and a control unit disposed in the rotor for controlling the blade pitch angle of the at least one rotor blade, wherein the central control device and the control unit in the rotor can exchange data with each other via a data link, which comprises at least one first sending and receiving device at the nacelle side and at least one second sending and receiving device at the rotor side, wherein a wireless network connection with a safety-oriented communication protocol is provided between the at least one first sending and receiving device and the at least one second sending and receiving device, and that one monitoring- and communication device at a time is associated to the first and/or the second sending and receiving device, which can monitor the function of the sending and receiving device and initiate a predetermined action
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2012
    Assignee: Nordex Energy GmbH
    Inventors: Wolfgang Kabatzke, Gerd Hose
  • Patent number: 8186951
    Abstract: A mounting assembly for a propeller assembly component includes a monolithic piece having a housing and a mounting pad. An auxiliary component is directly mounted to the mounting pad of the monolithic piece.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 12, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2012
    Assignee: Hamilton Sundstrand Corporation
    Inventor: Paul A. Carvalho
  • Patent number: 8186950
    Abstract: An aerodynamic device is provided for detection of physical conditions of wind turbine blade operation. One or more vibration sensors are mounted on the blades in an aerodynamic housing and configured to monitor a physical condition of the blades that varies in accordance with a vibration of the housing. A processor is operably coupled to the one or more vibration sensors. The processor may be configured to use the vibration frequency of a component of the blade to determine the physical condition of the blade, and generate a signal indicating the physical condition of the blade when determined.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 29, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Pedro L. Benito, Eugenio Yegro, Po Wen Cheng
  • Patent number: 8182231
    Abstract: Wind turbine with a rotor blade relatively insensitive to turbulence because it is more slender than prior blades and is nevertheless able to generate sufficient lift by virtue of the fact that flow enhancing elements such as vortex generators combat flow separation. The slenderness is defined by the chord numbers C and D of which C is defined as C=Ncrclr?2/R2, in which N is the number of blades, cr is the local chord, cl the lift coefficient, r the radial position, ? the tip speed ratio and R the rotor radius. Subsequently, the chord should be less than what follows from the equation C=M in which M=?1.19+9.74Cp?21.01Cp2+17.50Cp3 and Cp is the power coefficient. This wind turbine is subject to about 2-12% less operational loads and to about 5-40% reduced survival wind speed loads compared to classical designs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 2, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2012
    Assignee: Cortenergy BV
    Inventor: Gustave Paul Corten
  • Patent number: 8177505
    Abstract: The present disclosure is related to a method and a measuring device adapted for determining a rotational position of at least one rotor blade of a wind turbine. The method includes a step of measuring a gravity induced blade moment of the at least one rotor blade. Then, an actual rotational position of the rotor blade is determined from the measured gravity induced blade moment.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventor: Hartmut Scholte-Wassink
  • Patent number: 8177474
    Abstract: A method of detecting rubs during operation of a turbomachine comprising at least one rotating object having a tip and a shelf is provided. The method includes generating signals representative of a sensed parameter and processing the signals to generate height versus time data for the tip. The height of the tip corresponds to the distance between the tip and the shelf. The method further includes monitoring the height versus time data, in order to determine whether a change in the height data exceeds a threshold value, and detecting a rub of the rotating object(s) on a second object, when the change in the height data exceeds the threshold value. A rub detection system for a turbomachine and a turbine engine system with rub detection are also provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2007
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2012
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: Emad Andarawis Andarawis, William Lee Herron, Samhita Dasgupta, John Harry Down, Mahadevan Balasubramaniam, David So Keung Chan, David Walter Parry
  • Patent number: 8172529
    Abstract: Operations of a turbine to generate energy from a relatively slow fluid flow, such as wind and water, are described. The turbine has a plurality of foils rotating about a central axis at a rotational velocity, each of the foils having a length and a foil axis parallel to the length and the central axis with each of the foils rotatable about its foil axis. From determinations of a velocity of the fluid flow, and angular location of each foil and the rotational velocity about the central axis, an attack angle of each foil is controlled with respect to the direction of fluid flow about the foil axis responsive to the velocity of the fluid flow, the angular location of the foil and the rotational velocity as the foil rotates about the central axis.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: Lonestar Inventions LP
    Inventor: Osman Ersed Akcasu
  • Patent number: 8172532
    Abstract: A method for adjusting a pivotally mounted rotor blade of a wind energy converter includes controlling a first drive and a second drive to collectively turn the rotor blade into an operating position; detecting whether a failure of the first drive has occurred; activating, when the failure of the first drive has occurred, a first activatable lockout connected to the rotor blade, which prevents turning of the rotor blade into the operating position while allowing turning of the rotor blade into a feathered position; and controlling, when the failure of the first drive has occurred, the second drive to turn the rotor blade into the feathered position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 11, 2009
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: AMSC Austria GmbH
    Inventor: Anton Wolf
  • Patent number: 8167555
    Abstract: Disclosed a horizontal axis wind turbine including: a rotor; a nacelle; a tower; an independent pitch control device; and a yaw control device, wherein the horizontal axis wind turbine is an up-wind type one including a waiting mode, wherein (1) the independent pitch control device performs a first step of changing all the blades to be in feathering states when the wind speed exceeds the predetermined value, a second step of changing the blades to be in reverse feathering states one by one sequentially, and a third step of holding all the blades in the reverse feathering states, and (2) the yaw control device controls a yaw brake to take a braking value allowing the yaw rotation when the wind speed exceeds the predetermined value, wherein the rotor is allowed to swing a leeward of the tower by executing the control operations (1) and (2) as the waiting mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 22, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 1, 2012
    Assignee: Fuji Jukogyo Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Shigeo Yoshida
  • Patent number: 8162606
    Abstract: A rotary wing aircraft including a vehicle vibration control system. The vehicle vibration control system includes a rotating hub mounted vibration control system, the rotating hub mounted vibration control system mounted to the rotating rotary wing hub with the rotating hub mounted vibration control system rotating with the rotating rotary wing hub.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 7, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2012
    Assignee: Lord Corporation
    Inventors: Mark R. Jolly, Andrew D. Meyers, Daniel Mellinger, Douglas E. Ivers, Askari Badre-Alam, Douglas A. Swanson, Russell E. Altieri
  • Publication number: 20120093647
    Abstract: Methods of registering events in a wind power system comprising at least two data processors. The data processors of said wind power system are mutually time synchronized. Events are registered in said at least two data processors. The timing of said events registered in different of said at least two data processors is established according to said time synchronization. Events may be registered and preferably analyzed according to a common timing. The event analysis makes it possible to establish an analysis where events of different wind turbines are basically interrelated and where information regarding such interrelation may be important or crucial for establishment of control or fault detection based on correctly timed events from different wind turbines.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 22, 2011
    Publication date: April 19, 2012
    Applicant: VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS A/S
    Inventors: John Bengtson, Bo Lovmand, Tage Kristensen, Niels Erik Danielsen
  • Patent number: 8157522
    Abstract: The invention relates to a method for the calibration of at least one sensor (11-14) of a wind power plant (10). The invention also relates to a wind power plant (10). The calibration process according to the invention is captured by the at least one sensor (11-14). The measurement value (30, 31), which is a measure for the load of a component (15-17), is evaluated, wherein the wind power plant has at least the moveable component (15, 15?, 15?, 16, 17), wherein the component (15-17) is pivoted or rotated around a predeterminable axis (19, 20). The wind power plant according to the invention is provided with a calibration module for the automatic calibration of at least one sensor (11-14), which measures the load of a movable component (15-17) of the wind power plant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 27, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 17, 2012
    Assignee: Repower Systems AG
    Inventor: Detlef Bolz