Our client’s objective was to monitor and control the rotational speed of a wind turbine to prevent excessive wear and catastrophic damage to blades and internal components. Digital Dividend solved the problem by developing specific hardware and firmware using micro controller and integrated circuit (IC) technology. The turbine operator can now restrict rotor speed to specific ranges through the use of a potentiometer, lengthening equipment life and ensuring the turbine does not burn out, or even explode, during extreme conditions.
The purpose of this project was to control the frequency of a wind turbine’s rotational speed, thus preventing the turbine from damage. Wind turbines obviously need wind to function properly, but drastic increases in wind speed can cause failures. If the revolutions per minute of the turbine increases dramatically, equipment can fail. The challenge was to prevent these failures through one or another system.
After evaluating various approaches, we selected embedded system technologies including a microcontroller, signal processing, and analog integrated circuit (IC) technology. The microcontroller was programmed in the C language. The Printed Circuit Board (PCB) were developed using Ki-Cad, and for simulation and testing purposes, Proteus and Multisim software was implemented. The system operates within a 3-phase 24VAC unit.
The purpose of the device is to monitor rotor frequency, and allow the owner to maintain a safe range of operation. The potentiometer we developed increases or decreases rotational frequency to meet specified limits, automatically cutting load when the wind turbine exceeds established parameters.