Just Built: World’s Largest Roll-Ring Rotor Assembly Ever

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Diamond-Roltran has just completed building the world’s largest Roll-Ring® rotor assembly for use in its Generator Collector test platform for wind turbines.

World's Largest Roll-Ring Rotor Assembly

Roll-Rings® are the only rotating electrical contact solution that rolls instead of wears like slip rings. Because Roll-Rings® roll and do not generate wear debris they are capable of rolling up to 1 billion revolutions and beyond. Diamond-Roltran identified the Wind Turbine Generator market as an opportunity to supply Roll-Rings® to help wind farm owners and managers reduce costs and increase up time by eliminating slip ring brush and rotor maintenance.

Wind Turbines utilizing Doubly Fed Induction Generators, knows as DFIGs, use slip rings which require periodic maintenance.  The Roll-Ring® Wind Collector is designed to replace those slip rings and be maintenance-free.  As of July 2012 AWEA data the US had 48 Gigawatts of Wind Turbine generating capacity on line with another 8 G under construction which calculates roughly to 37,000 wind turbines.

The Roll-Ring® Wind Collector Rotor test assembly pictured with Product Design Engineer Lenn Daugherty has two channels capable of carrying 600 amps each. Each channel has three grooves for Roll-Rings® to roll in and conduct power between the Stator and Rotor assemblies. Each Roll-Ring® will run in its own groove and, at three inches in diameter, is capable of conducting 200 amps each. The sixty-two pound rotor assembly was balanced to 2,000 rpm.

The next step in the development program is to install the rotor into the stator housing and then install Roll-Rings® to conduct current between the rotor and stator conductive grooves. The assembled test unit will be operated at 1,800 rpm with 600 amps fed into one channel, shorted across the rotor posts then back across the other channel. It will be possible to view inside the unit while in rotation to confirm operation.

Once testing in complete for the two channel unit a full scale commercial prototype is set to be built which will carry 2,400 amps at speeds up to 1,800 rpm. The Roll-Ring® Wind Collector will have three phases capable of 600 amps each and one 600 amp ground leg. The Collector is designed to be a form, fit and function replacement for slip rings yet require no periodic maintenance.


Diamond-Roltran, LLC provides the proven Roll-Ring® rolling electrical contact solution to replace slip rings for rotary power, signal and data transfer requirements for mission critical applications the world over. Diamond-Roltran supplies its maintenance-free mission critical Roll-Rings® directly to military and aerospace customers worldwide and supplies Roll-Rings® integrated into rotary couplers for microwave antenna applications through Diamond Antenna & Microwave and now Diamond Antenna Europe BVBA. http://www.diamondroll-ring.com

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Matt Edison
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