Sliding electrical contacts for wind turbines




Greater Copenhagen area


One issue in relation to wind turbines is transfer of electrical power from a moving turbine nacelle to a stationary turbine tower. This involves high currents though cables with large cross-sections.

Sliding electrical contacts, capable of transferring high currents with low losses are an interesting possibility that could allow for more flexibility with regard to wind turbine design.      

Project description

The subject of study is the electrical properties of various contact configurations and contact materials in powder- or liquid form, e.g. graphite powder or a liquid metal with low melting point. The project will focus on laboratory testing, supported by analytical calculations and possibly finite element simulations. The project may include the following elements:

·      A literature study within the subject of electrical contact properties and collection of material data.

·      Construction of a test set-up for testing of electrical contact properties in collaboration with supervisors and people from the CEE workshop. Electrical, thermal and mechanical aspects must be considered.

·      Outlining a test plan that covers variation of parameters such as; contact material, pressure, current density and temperature.

·      Testing as well as evaluation and interpretation of test results.

·      Comparing test results against calculations and presentation of the results.

·      Based on the acquired experience; coming up with ideas for conceptual design of a three-phase sliding contact.

In collaboration with

Siemens Gamesa

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Company / Organization

DTU Elektro


Joachim Holbøll


Professor, Vicecenterleder


Supervisor info

MSc in Sustainable Energy


Joachim Holbøll


Final project, MSc thesis, Special course

MSc in Electrical Engineering


Joachim Holbøll


Final project, MSc thesis, Special course

MSc in Wind Energy


Joachim Holbøll


Final project, MSc thesis, Special course

Technical University of Denmark

For almost two centuries DTU, Technical University of Denmark, has been dedicated to fulfilling the vision of H.C. Ørsted – the father of electromagnetism – who founded the university in 1829 to develop and create value using the natural sciences and the technical sciences to benefit society.

Today, DTU is ranked as one of the foremost technical universities in Europe, continues to set new records in the number of publications, and persistently increases and develops our partnerships with industry, and assignments accomplished by DTU’s public sector consultancy.

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CVR-nr. 30 06 09 46

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