Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Active YAW 2.0 KidWind Challenge

Last week I posted my first design of a KidWind turbine YAW using a tail to achieve upwind passive yaw modified to make it a motor driven Active up wind YAW like the commercial grade units.

To the left is my improved 2.0 design. To the right you can see that the YAW with a tail required the tail to be attached to the 1 - 1/4" PVC pipe that rotated around the center 1" PVC pipe that the nacelle was attached to in last weeks post.

The key is this. Mounting the 32 tooth KidWind ring gear to a 1 - 1/4" center post and fixing it to the top of the pipe (turbine tower in the real world). This is trickier than it looks. Getting the pieces  concentric and getting enough thickness to hold threads for the set screws.

And the whole package (Nacelle in the real world) sits right on top of the tower just like this. Looks like a nice opportunity to bring in a new technology, fiberglass, and the design and construction of a shell to cover all this and protect it from the weather and birds! Maybe even some sponsor advertising!

So the top is pretty much the same with the limit switches and control vane that senses the direction of the wind. But, attached to the bottom side of this board are the relays and battery to power the system (seen in the picture above this one).

Another key to the design is that the plate that holds the drive motors is fastened to the 1" PVC that goes down inside the 1 -1/4" pipe (tower). The plate sits on and rotates on a thrust needle bearing. When the signal comes from the wind vane the motors turn the pinion gears either CW or CCW to turn the Nacelle and blades to point into the wind. Two motors also act as a brake when not powered.

As a bonus I put a piece of elastic on the bottom back to hold the Vernier GO Direct Energy Sensor and my 25 watt 30 ohm resistor is mounted also so it can be attached during a wind tunnel test.

So if the technology that runs your cars power windows can be adopted to the way wind turbines YAW to face the wind. And a KidWind team can work to design, build and solve all the problems that  present themselves during the process. I say KidWind is a great hands on learning that covers all the S.T.E.M. bases and more!

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