The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has signed a contract with Romax Technology Inc., for a $10 million dynamometer construction project funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
Romax Technology will assess the design, fabrication and testing of a 5 MW gearbox and the driveline equipment for a dynamometer test facility at NREL's National Wind Technology Center (NWTC). The new gearbox will upgrade the NWTC's dynamometer test capabilities from a current capacity rating of 2.5 MW to 5 MW.Â Â
As the primary U.S. wind energy research and development facility, the NWTC provides the wind industry with customized turbine and component testing. The planned 5 MW dynamometer upgrade will enhance the research and operational capabilities of the U.S. wind industry. Dynamometers enable industry and testing agencies to verify the performance and reliability of wind turbine drivetrain prototypes and commercial machines.Â
Romax will conduct a due-diligence assessment of a gearbox to be constructed by Brad Foote Gearworks Inc. The assessment will include elements likely to affect reliability and performance, such as the gears, bearings, lubrication system, assembly and manufacturing methods.Â Â
The Romax effort on the DOE/NREL dynamometer construction project will be based at the Romax office in Boulder, Colo.Â Â
SOURCE: Romax Technology