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A wholly owned subsidiary of
The Morgan Crucible Company PLC

Unraveling
the
Commutation Mystery

DC
Machine
Basics

Carbon Brushes .

Brush Holder Types .

g N N = Number of Turns g = Air Gap .

φ Flux N i e φ α Nxi .

SATURATION CURVE Flux φ in Air Gap Iron Saturation Region p a G r Ai on i g e R N x IF (Ampere Turns) .

When Flux or Current Changes N IF e φ dφ e=-N dt d IF e=-L dt .

M. = B x l xV where B = Flux Density ( φ / area) l = Length of the conductor V = Velocity of the conducto V N IF e l - 4 2 0 2 4 + .Generated Volts Volts = E. F.

Force on Conductor F = B x IA x l where B = Flux Density (φ / area) IA = Current l = Length of the conductor V F N l R IF IA e .

Generator V α BxlxV V α B α I Field .

Motor Speed V = BxlxV l V α B x RPM RPM α Volts α Volts I B Field Torque Torque F α B x IA x l Torque = Force x Radius Torque α B x IA r B ( Flux Density ) .

Commutation Frame N S ΔI dI V = .L A= .IA South Pole .L A Δt dt This is called Reactance Voltage Armature Current Armature Rotation North Pole + IA 0 Δ IA Δt Time .

L Δ IA Δt B x l x V =.Frame N S Armature Rotation ( V ) V = BxlxV V α B x l x RPM V = .L Δ IA Δt B α IA .

Frame N C φ S Flux due to main field .

Frame N C φ φ S Flux due to main field C Flux due to armature conductor current .

Frame N C φ φ S Flux due to main field C Flux due to armature conductor current C φ Net flux due to main field and armature current .

Cancels Effects of Armature Reaction .Bar Voltage .to .Improves Some Output Characteristics .Pole Face or Compensating Winding Frame S N φ .Reduces Bar .

Commutator Pole or Interpole and Windings Main Pole or Field Pole and Windings Frame N Pole Face or Compensating Windings S Armature Windings .

Commutating Pole or Interpole Frame Backgap go Shims Flux g Armature φ Flux α N x IA Frontgap .

Brush Neutral Position Frame N S Brush Commutation Zone .

Commutating Field Strength .Adjustments 1. Brush Position 2.

Factory Method Field Method .

Excavator MG Set .

DC Drops ……….. Easy to Measure .

.AC Drops ………. More Sensitive To Shorted Turns .

Main Field AC Drop Test Volts Volts Volts Voltages Should Agree Within 15% .

5 2:00 19.8 10:00 20.Main Field Pole Good Coil Volts 12:00 20.7 .5 4:00 19.2 8:00 19.3 6:00 20.Typical Data AC Drops .

Typical Data AC Drops .1 6:00 20.8 10:00 20.2 18.9 4:00 19.Main Field Pole Bad Coil Good Coil Shorted Coils Volts Volts 12:00 20.5 24.8 23.5 17.3 12.6 .3 2:00 19.3 8:00 19.7 23.

Commutating Pole AC Drop Test .

Typical Data AC Drops .85 7:00 0.89 .93 11:00 0.87 3:00 0.88 9:00 0.92 5:00 0.Commutating Field Pole Good Coil Volts 1:00 0.

AC Voltage Drops If Voltage Drops Vary More Than 15% Between Coils. Replace Coil With Low Voltage Drop .

.050” on GE equip. Spacing Diff.030” On Westinghouse Equipment D Max.Brush Spacing A F B or t a t u m m Co Max. Spacing diff = . = ______ C E A = ______ B = ______ C = ______ D = ______ E = ______ F = ______ Target is .

Brush Arm .

Brush Spacing .

Pole Tip Spacing Frame Frame A B Maximum Difference Between A and B is 1/ 8” .

Uneven and Tapered Airgaps Frame Pole Armature Pole Frame .

Airgap Taper Gauge .

Airgap Measurement .

MMS 6000 .

Other Things To Check • Electrical Connections • Vibration .

Methods to Set Electrical Neutral • DC Kick • AC Null • Reversability (Speed & Voltage) • Black Band • Brush Potential .

net in “Papers”. “NECP – Tuning Up DC Motors and Generators – Jun 07” .For additional information on tuning up DC machines see the WMEA web site http://wmea.

“Setting Neutral via the AC curve method on DC machines – Flanders – Nov 05” .Another static method for setting neutral can be found on the WMEA web site http://WMEA.net in “Papers”.

Adjustable .125” Commutating Pole Shim .015” Commutating Pole Shim Fixed .

It is recommended that on machine disassembly.Adjusting interpole strength in the field is difficult at best and has safety concerns. . the shims be taped together and the side facing the pole and frame and pole location be marked and the shims be replaced exactly as they came out.

Commutating Pole Shim Order Frame Commutating Pole Thin Steel Thin Aluminum 1/8 Inch Aluminum 1/8 Inch Steel .

Theory of
Brush Operation

Carbon Brushes
• Transfer Electrical Current from
Stationary Parts To Rotating Parts
• Aids In The Commutation Process

Base Carbon .

Electrographitic Family

D
E

Increasing

C

Increasing

B

Increasing

A

Increasing

Commutating
Resistivity
Ability
Life

Treatment

Treatment

Improves Brush Life
Improves Filming
Provides Low Humidity Protection
Allow High Temperature Operation
Reduces Copper Drag
Contaminated Atmospheres
Minimizes Commutator Wear
Reduces Friction

Wear Rate Electrographitics Untreated Treated Brush Temperature Humidity (Increasing) (Decreasing) .

Electrographitics • Treatment Lubricates • Treatment Increases Mechanical Strength • Some Treatments Improve Commutation which Lowers Temperatures and Increases Life .

Coefficient of Friction Friction Brush Temperature 175C .

Coefficient of Friction Friction Friction is highest at low brush temperatures (light loads) Brush Temperature 175C .

steel) -Treatments can increase or decrease friction Brush Temperature 175C .Ring material (copper. brass.Friction Other Factors affect friction Coefficient of Friction .Low humidity .Chemical contamination .

Airborne Contaminants 5% Carbon Graphite from the brush 15 .20% Carbon Brush Grains of Moisture Copper Oxide 75% Copper Commutator Commutator Film Makeup .

. which eventually leads to a raw commutator surface. This is normally referred to as the commutator film which is composed of: Copper Oxide 75% Graphite 15 – 20 % Contaminants 5% Water High brush temperature and low humidity reduce the amount of water in the film. which is abrasive without water or some other ingredient to lubricate the brush/commutator interface. Seizure between the brush and commutator film can result. which then reduces lubrication between the brush and commutator film.Lubrication All surfaces require lubrication to prevent excessive wear. This is very true for carbon.

Humidity Explanation .

The amount of water vapor in the air as a percentage of what the air could hold at that temperature. This is what the weather man reports .Humidity Relative Humidity.

Absolute humidity is independent of temperature (until you fall below the dew point).Humidity Absolute Humidity. . Absolute humidity is what brushes care about.The mass of water vapor per mass of dry air.

000143 lbs .% Absolute Humidity – grains / lb dry air 1 grain = 0.Humidity Units Relative Humidity .

Temperature at which relative humidity is 100% (saturated).Humidity Dew Point . (dew) . If temperature decreases further moisture will condense out of the air.

18 C to +41 .% Relative Humidity 180 170 150 140 130 120 110 100 20 10 40 90 80 60 70 100 80 60 50 Absolute Humidity 160 40 30 20 10 0 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 Temperature (Degrees F) 85 90 95 100 105 Grain / lb Dry Air (20 F to 105 F .

% Relative Humidity Psychometric Chart .40 F to + 40 F .40 C to + 4 C 24 22 20 18 16 Grain / lb Dry Air 14 10 12 50 10 8 100 6 4 2 0 -40 40 -30 -20 -10 0 10 20 Temperature (Degrees F) 30 .

.

26C) 100% 1.Absolute Humidity Where When Temp.40F (. H LA Summer 90 F (32C) 90% 178 gr/lb AZ Summer 100F (38C) 10% 28 gr/lb TX Winter 100% 24 gr/lb WY Winter .20F (.5 gr/lb 32F (0C) .8 gr/lb AB Winter .H.40C) 100% 0. Abs. R.

Wear vs Brush Pressure Wear Rate A D B C Brush Pressure Intensity .

Wear vs Brush Pressure A AB. Wear Rate Sparking.Spring Pressure too light. D B C Brush Pressure Intensity . electrical erosion and high temperature accelerate brush wear.

D B C Brush Pressure Intensity .Wear vs Brush Pressure A CD – Spring pressure too high Wear Rate High abrasive frictional forces accelerate brush wear.

Wear vs Brush Pressure Wear Rate A BC – Balance to achieve minimal wear D B C Brush Pressure Intensity .

To calculate the brush pressure.How Much Brush Pressure ? The proper amount of brush pressure against the commutator or slip ring depends on the application and/or the brush grade. Brushes that contact the commutator at an angle do have more contact area that the product of their T x W. Brush T x W = the cross sectional area.75 3 to 5 Application General Industrial Motors Fractional HP Motors Traction Motors Slip Rings – Low Speed. Graphite Grade Metal Graphite Grades . but it is usually not a significant difference so the easier to calculate cross sectional area is used. Recommended Brush PSI Range 3.5 to 6 3 to 8 5 to 10 3 to 4 2 to 2. Graphite Grade Slip Rings – High Speed. you need to know or measure the spring force and the brush thickness and width.

Do not sandblast springs or brush holders ! Solvent clean .

Single vs Multiple Wafer F F Rotating Surface .Limited brush contact points on irregular surfaces Rotating Surface .Better brush face contact .Increased cross resistance for better commutation .

Allows movement between wafers .Absorbs shock and vibration .Steel Clip or Rubber Hardtop F F Rotating Surface .Distributes force evenly if spring is off center Rotating Surface .

2 VCD = RA + RB ic Becomes less as R B increases • Use high resistivity grade brush for difficult to commutate machines. .I A Load Amps VR = ic x RA + VCD + ic x RB + VCD RB VCD VCD RAic VR ic VR .

.2 VCD ic = R + R + R A B W ic Becomes less with Rw adder • Use 2 or 3 wafer brush construction for difficult to commutate machines.IA Load Amps VR = ic x RA + VCD + ic x RB + ic x RW + VCD RB VCD V CD i RA c VR RW VR .

Modified Reaction Holder Rotation .

Modified Reaction Holder Friction Chatter Rotation .

Reaction Holder Trailing Rotation .

Reaction Holder Stubbing or Leading Rotation .

Reaction Holder Friction Chatter Stubbing or Leading Rotation .

Reaction Holder Stubbing or Leading Rotation .

Questions .