Posters - WindEurope Annual Event 2024

Follow the event on:


Come meet the poster presenters to ask them questions and discuss their work

We would like to invite you to come and see the posters at our upcoming conference. The posters will showcase a diverse range of research topics, and will give delegates an opportunity to engage with the authors and learn more about their work. Whether you are a seasoned researcher or simply curious about the latest developments in your field, we believe that the posters will offer something of interest to everyone. So please join us at the conference and take advantage of this opportunity to learn and engage with your peers in the academic community. We look forward to seeing you there!

PO237: Designing Large Segmented Flexible Conical Plain Bearings as Wind Turbine Main Bearings

Timm Jakobs, Research Scientist, Chair for Wind Power Drives


Wind turbines (WT) are a key technology towards a carbon neutral energy production worldwide. To keep wind energy economically competitive in the future, the levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) needs to be reduced further. Critical components regarding the maintenance costs are the main rolling bearings which have a failure probability between 15 and 30 % within their designed lifetime of 20 years. Replacing such a bearing is an expensive procedure because the WT drivetrain needs to be dismantled. Other than for state-of-the-art rolling bearings segmented plain bearings allow an up-tower replacement of faulty segments. The FlexPad bearing concept was developed specific to fulfil the task of an easy to maintain WT main bearing. The conical and inherent flexible design of the FlexPad plain bearing necessitated a new design method because established methods or guidelines were not applicable. This novel method relays on sophisticated simulation models which are translated into a surrogate model of the bearing. Finally, the new bearing design is calculated with an optimization algorithm which utilizes the surrogate model. Up to now nether the used simulation model nor the method itself are validated. Objective of this contribution is a validated simulation model and proven feasibility of the new method to design a safe to operate plain bearing specifically for the application as main bearing in WT. To accomplish this validation two prototypes of the FlexPad bearing were build and tested on a test bench. The measurements the tests provided were used to validate the simulation model which is the foundation on the design method. Also, the tests proved the feasibility of the method to design a reliable plain bearing fit to be used as main bearing in WT.

Event Ambassadors

Follow the event on: