carburized gear, contact fatigue, surface roughness, residual stress, Dang Van criterion


Contact fatigue issues become more and more crucial in gear industry as they significantly affect the reliability and service life of associated mechanical systems such as wind turbine gearboxes. The contact fatigue behavior is mostly determined by the mechanical properties of materials and stress fields near the contact area, which is further influenced by the lubrication and surface roughness due to pressure fluctuations. In this study, a numerical model incorporating the lubrication state, tooth surface roughness, residual stress, and mechanical properties of the material is developed to determine the contact fatigue behavior of a megawatt level wind turbine carburized gear. The variations of the hardness and residual stress along the depth were characterized by the Vickers hardness measurement and X-ray diffraction test, respectively. The elastohydrodynamic lubrication theory was applied to predict the contact pressure distribution, highlighting the influence of the surface roughness that stemed from the original measurement through an optical profiler. The stress histories of the studied material points during a complete contact loading cycle were fast calculated using the discrete- concrete fast Fourier transformation (DC-FFT) method. Modified Dang Van diagrams under different working conditions were determined to estimate the contact fatigue failure risk. The effect of the root mean square (RMS) value of the surface roughness on the failure risk at critical material points were discussed in detail. Results revealed that the surface roughness significantly increases the contact fatigue failure risk within a shallow area, and the maximum risk appears near the surface.


Tsinghua University Press