In traditional installations, slip rings are used, but these cannot be maintained at high speeds because they heat up too much and cause too much data interference. For that reason, NLR developed a new way of transferring power and data – one that does not require physical contact. “The system uses two rings, one transferring power and the other data”, explains Rens. “The power is transferred based on the principle of a transformer, and data transfers are effected using two coupled strip lines that work with local, intentional crosstalk.
‘Excellent performance’ label
The project with contactless power and data transfer has been operational for 750 hours over a 9-month test campaign of the Z-08. During that time, it was used in a number of measuring campaigns, by both DNW and Airbus, without any data being lost. “The system has proved to be very robust and we’re very proud of that. It’s been a lot of work, but it has paid off and that’s made it worth the headaches it gave us at times”, says Rens. The test results were reason for Airbus to give the CRPDT system its ‘excellent performance’ label.
Z-08 model in DNW wind tunnel during CROR test campaign
Because this is a completely new system, NLR chose to apply for a patent on the high rotational speed contactless power and data transfer system. This will ensure the system’s wide-ranging applicability in the future, for instance for the licensed development of components containing the contactless system on anything that requires a rotating measuring system on a shaft, for commercial purposes. Currently, no systems with this capability are commercially available.