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Delegates are invited to meet and discuss with the poster presenters in this topic directly after the session 'Advanced electrical systems: From megabyte to megawatt' taking place on Wednesday, 12 March 2014 at 09:00-10:30. The meet-the-authors will take place in the poster area.

Radjy Ramlall INSSET, France
Remy ASTIER (1) F P Thierry CAPITAINE (1) Valery BOURNY (1) Jerome DUBOIS (1) Jerome FORTIN (1) Veronique DAROS (2)
(1) INSSET, Saint-Quentin CEDEX, France (2) MERSEN, AMIENS, France

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Technological leap of signal transfer system: to contactless system


A wind turbine is a complex mechanical system which downtime and maintenance should be reduced. To ensure its availability is today a challenge for all actors of the wind world.
Thanks to its proven solutions, MERSEN is a global supplier for the wind turbine manufacturers and operators. One of the most significant solution is unquestionably the Signal Transfer System (STS). Also called slip ring unit, it is an electromechanical system allowing the transfer of power and information (from sensors and actuators) between the static and the rotary part of the machine through sliding contacts consisting of wires and rings.


Requiring essential and regular maintenance (e.g. lubrication) and the use of expensive precious materials, the overall cost of this system becomes more and more important. The aim of the PHYLEAS project is to study all locks to become able to suppress the sliding contacts, and to substitute it by an embedded system using a wireless technology.

Main body of abstract

The new architecture integrates an embedded system allowing data transfer via a wireless radio frequency technology : this method is not used today in the world of turbine world. An embedded system is an electronic board allowing to make the like between hardware and software in order to solve the problem in an optimized way by reducing costs, size, and energy consumption.

In the current configuration, slip ring units transmit only electrical signal. The great advantage of this system is the following : it does not need to” know” what is transmitted, so it does not need to be smart !

On the contrary, a contactless solution must retrieve various useful information such as data, ID and must know the parameters (data rate, ID, ...) of fieldbus to be able to synchronize and retrieve information. It is therefore necessary to work with the OSI model to optimize the transfer of information. The issue of electromagnetic compatibility of the new system will also be studied.


The project is in its third year. Several wireless demonstrators were realized and being evaluated. A experimental test bench was also performed, to quantify and characterize the systems developed. The first results can be demonstrated that they are hardware and software strategies are more efficient thanks to the various indicators such as load and the delay caused by the wireless system.

Learning objectives
It is important to define the different communication protocols to modeling them. This allows us to optimize the recovery of useful data (ID, data field, ...) and transmit them with wireless technologies.