April 2014

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April 2014 (Complete Issue PDF)

Feature Articles

Solar Power Turns a Corner
According to GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), photovoltaic (PV) installations increased 41 percent from 2012 to 2013. Additionally, 410 MW of concentrated solar power came online in 2013. Solar was the second-largest source of new electricity generating capacity in the United States.

The Ever-Efficient Motor
This product focus highlights the latest technology in electric motors.

Train to Maintain
Is industrial maintenance another lost art, or is there hope that we can train the next generation of maintenance professionals?

Lower Service Life Plus Less Waste Equals Lower Cost
Bearings that show wear may not always need to be replaced. Depending on the degree and type of wear, they may be candidates for reconditioning, a process that restores bearings to like-new specifications and performance - at an average 50 to 60 percent of the cost of replacement.

Technical Articles

Gear Lubrication: Long-Term Protection for Wind Turbines
The chemical and physical properties of gear oils may change, depending - more or less - upon their formulation and the environmental conditions under which they are used. This is why - after three years of use in a wind turbine - a gear oil was examined to determine if indeed changes were evident and if the protection of the gears and rolling bearings still met the same requirements as would be expected of fresh oil. Our findings revealed that the existing gear oil - as well as its ability to protect the gears and rolling bearings - had degraded very little compared to fresh oil.

The Step Motor
Step motors come in many sizes and shapes. But they all share one item in common - each step motor type moves in discrete-degree steps. They react to a series of voltage pulses supplied by their basic controller, known as an "indexer." The step motor was the first to accept digital pulses, then move or rotate a prescribed amount without any feedback device. All step motors are position devices without the need to use any feedback devices. They operate primarily in an open-loop control scheme.


Motor Appreciation (Publishers Page)
When I woke up this morning, my house was a comfortable 68°F, despite the fact that overnight temperatures in the Chicago area were close to freezing. I don’t often think about the blower motor that helps circulate the warm air from my furnace throughout my house, but today I was grateful for it...

China! (Market Update)
Our last installment called out the likely headwinds from both the C.R.A.P. currencies (Canada, Russia, Australia and Latin America) and also weather impact. As companies start reporting in the coming weeks, expect first quarter results to be mildly impacted. This issue we take a closer look at China.

Working in AutoCAD (Ask the Expert)
How does one draw and mesh involute gear teeth in AutoCAD?

Product News (Product News)
The complete Product News section from the April 2014 issue of Power Transmission Engineering.

Calendar (Events)
The complete technical Calendar from the April 2014 issue of Power Transmission Engineering.

Industry News (Industry News)
The complete Industry News section from the April 2014 issue of Power Transmission Engineering.

Gonzo Gear Design (Power Play)
Artist Tom Longtin adds completely non-circular planetary gears to his unique portfolio.