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Title: Condition monitoring and optical strain measurement for power industry components
Author: Palmer, Iain Alastair
ISNI:       0000 0004 2711 7735
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2012
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Condition monitoring and life extension of components is vital to reducing risk of failure and operational costs in the power industry. Optical strain measurement techniques have been studied and developed for use in condition monitoring of power plant steam pipes and wind turbine components. In addition, these techniques have been used to assist evaluation of damage mechanisms in these components. Power plant steam pipes operate at high temperature (approximately 600°C) and pressure, and as a result undergo large creep deformations. Monitoring creep strain is a key factor in assessing remaining life of important components. An optical strain measurement system developed by EON, Automatic Reference Creep Measurement And Control (ARCMAC) has been researched as to its combined effectiveness with Digital Image Correlation (DIC) in obtaining accurate and reliable strain measurement for high temperature components. DIC has also been used to monitor and evaluate damage in composite wind turbine blade components. The use of this optical strain technique has allowed comparison of experimentally-derived full-field strain maps to be compared with finite element analysis (FEA) results. Additionally, the use of acoustic emission (AE) as a condition monitoring technique for wind turbine blades has been investigated. Use of these techniques has given greater understanding of failure mechanisms in wind turbine components; in particular, transverse tensile damage and delamination have been investigated. The influence of the Brazier effect upon wind turbine blade failure has also been researched. Results of this research have evaluated accuracy of using optical strain measurement techniques as well as their ability to effectively measure strain in particular regions of interest. The application of such techniques is an important requirement for both power plant and wind turbine components. Finally, studies into the use of optical strain measurement techniques as lab-based tools to study failure mechanisms have been performed.
Supervisor: Dear, John Sponsor: E.ON Engineering
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral