An Active Magnetic Bearing Test Rig for High Speed Rotating Machinery: Design and Application

Arcand, William, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering - School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Fittro, Roger, EN-Mech/Aero Engr Dept, University of Virginia

Modern industrial high-speed machinery often operates above multiple shaft critical speeds and requires in-depth rotordynamic modeling and analysis. Active Magnetic Bearings (AMBs) have proven to be a compelling alternative to traditional bearings for many such high-speed, high-performance applications. AMBs apply attractive magnetic forces to support and center a rotor shaft within the machine clearance. They can maintain contactless operation and handle the varying dynamic unbalance forces that are generated throughout the machine's operating range. However, the practical implementation of AMBs is more complex than for traditional bearings because AMBs are inherently open-loop unstable and require stabilizing feedback.

This research presents the design and practical construction of the Honeywell Magnetic Bearing Test Rig (HMBTR), a scaled version of an industrial high-speed vertical shaft spin test rig that is supported by magnetic bearings. State-space models for the rotor and supporting electromagnetic hardware are developed and experimentally validated. Two control designs are implemented: independent-axis SISO PID control and Modal PID control. Ultimately, the main goal of this project is to predict and successfully demonstrate the capability of AMBs for use in high-speed machinery applications. The HMBTR itself is delivered as a general platform for future learning and experimentation with AMBs.

MS (Master of Science)
Magnetic Bearing, Control
Issued Date: