(19)
(11)EP 2 498 385 B1

(12)EUROPEAN PATENT SPECIFICATION

(45)Mention of the grant of the patent:
06.05.2020 Bulletin 2020/19

(21)Application number: 12158682.0

(22)Date of filing:  08.03.2012
(51)Int. Cl.: 
H02K 5/22  (2006.01)
H01R 13/52  (2006.01)

(54)

Terminal assembly with reduced creepage

Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung mit reduziertem Kriechen

Ensemble de borne de terminaison à fluage réduit


(84)Designated Contracting States:
AL AT BE BG CH CY CZ DE DK EE ES FI FR GB GR HR HU IE IS IT LI LT LU LV MC MK MT NL NO PL PT RO RS SE SI SK SM TR

(30)Priority: 09.03.2011 US 201113043835

(43)Date of publication of application:
12.09.2012 Bulletin 2012/37

(73)Proprietor: Hamilton Sundstrand Corporation
Windsor Locks, CT 06096-1010 (US)

(72)Inventors:
  • Patel, Dhaval
    Loves Park, Illinois 61111 (US)
  • Allen, Edward C.
    Davis, Illinois 61019 (US)
  • Vanek, Laurence D.
    Janesville, Wisconsin 53545 (US)

(74)Representative: Dehns 
St. Bride's House 10 Salisbury Square
London EC4Y 8JD
London EC4Y 8JD (GB)


(56)References cited: : 
US-A- 5 227 587
US-A1- 2004 027 078
US-A1- 2003 203 673
US-B1- 6 264 505
  
      
    Note: Within nine months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European patent, any person may give notice to the European Patent Office of opposition to the European patent granted. Notice of opposition shall be filed in a written reasoned statement. It shall not be deemed to have been filed until the opposition fee has been paid. (Art. 99(1) European Patent Convention).


    Description

    BACKGROUND



    [0001] The present disclosure relates to rotating electrical machines such as high speed starter generators for gas turbine engines and, more particularly, to a terminal board assembly used to transmit electrical energy therefor.

    [0002] An aircraft may include various types of rotating electrical machines such as, for example, generators, motors, and starter/generators. Starter/generators may be operated as either a starter or a generator.

    [0003] The electrical power output from, or supplied to, the starter-generator may be communicated via one or more terminal assemblies. Each terminal assembly may include feedthroughs that are coupled to stator output leads within the generator housing and to a terminal block assembly outside of the generator housing.

    [0004] Terminal assemblies are designed to provide various clearances, such as "strike" performance, breakthrough performance and creepage performance. Creepage distance is typically the shortest path between two conductive components or between a conductive component and a bounding surface measured along the surface of the insulating material. A proper and adequate creepage distance protects against tracking, a process that produces a partially conducting path of localized deterioration on the surface of the insulating material as a result of electric discharges on or close to an insulation surface. In some instances, collection of foreign object debris near the terminal assembly may potentially affect performance with regards to clearance and creepage.

    [0005] US 5 227 587 A discloses a hermetic assembly arrangement which can be associated with electrical connection openings of a walled housing for large motor units.

    SUMMARY



    [0006] Viewed from a first aspect, the present invention provides a terminal assembly comprising: a terminal board with an interrupted aperture and an interface defined at least partially around said interrupted aperture; a terminal post mounted to said terminal board along a first axis; a passthrough with a first radially extending flange and a second radially extending flange, wherein said passthrough is defined along a second axis offset from said first axis, wherein said passthrough extends through said interrupted aperture, and wherein said first radially extending flange is engaged with said interface; and a terminal connection that extends through said passthrough and is in electrical contact with said terminal post.

    [0007] Viewed from a second aspect, the present invention provides a method of installing a terminal assembly in a starter-generator comprising: installing a passthrough with a first radially extending flange and a second radially extending flange at least partially through an interrupted aperture with an interface defined at least partially around the interrupted aperture, wherein the first radially extending flange is engaged with the interface; mounting a terminal post to the terminal board along a first axis; mounting the passthrough along a second axis offset and parallel to the first axis; and mounting a terminal connection that extends through said passthrough and is in electrical contact with said terminal post.

    BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS



    [0008] Various features will become apparent to those skilled in the art from the following detailed description of the disclosed non-limiting embodiment. The drawings that accompany the detailed description can be briefly described as follows:

    Figure 1 is a functional schematic block diagram of a synchronous starter-generator system;

    Figure 2 is a perspective view of the starter generator housing and terminal board assembly;

    Figure 3 is a sectional view of a terminal assembly along line 3-3 in Figure 2;

    Figure 4 is a top view of a terminal board of the terminal assembly;

    Figure 5 is a bottom view of the terminal board of the terminal assembly;

    Figure 6 is a perspective view of a feedthrough of the terminal assembly; and

    Figure 7 is a sectional view of a feedthrough of the terminal assembly.


    DETAILED DESCRIPTION



    [0009] Figure 1 schematically illustrates a functional block diagram of one embodiment of a starter-generator system 20. This exemplary starter/generator system 20, which is commonly known as a brushless AC starter/generator, includes a permanent magnet generator (PMG) 22, an exciter 24, a main/generator 26, a starter/generator control unit 28, and one or more rectifiers 30. The starter/generator system 20 may be used as a starter-generator for a gas turbine engine in aircraft, space, marine, land, or other vehicle-related applications where gas turbine engines are used. For aircraft applications, gas turbine engines are used for propulsion (e.g., the aircraft's main engines) and/or for power (e.g., the auxiliary power unit (APU)). It is to be appreciated, however, that the present invention is not limited to use in conjunction with a specific type of electrical machine. Thus, although the present invention is, for convenience of explanation, depicted and described as being implemented in a starter generator, it will be appreciated that it can be implemented in other electric machines.

    [0010] When the starter/generator system 20 is operating as a generator, a rotor 32 of the PMG 22, a rotor 34 of the exciter 24, and a rotor 36 of the main starter/generator 26 all rotate. As the PMG rotor 32 rotates, the PMG 22 generates and supplies AC power to the starter/generator control unit 28, which in turn supplies direct current (DC) power to a stator 38 of the exciter 24. The exciter rotor 34 in turn supplies AC power to the rectifier 30. The output from the rectifier 30 is DC power and is supplied to the main starter/generator rotor 36, which in turn outputs AC power from a main starter/generator stator 40. The starter/generator system 20 may supply output power at a variety of frequencies, or alternatively, a gearing system may be used to operate the starter/generator at a constant speed and, thus, supply a constant frequency. The output power from the main starter/generator stator 40 is typically three-phase AC power.

    [0011] When the starter/generator system 20 is in operation as a starter motor, AC power is supplied to the exciter stator 38 and the main starter/generator stator 40 from, for example, an AC power supply section in the starter/generator control unit 28 to cause the main starter/generator rotor 36 to rotate. As the main starter/generator rotor 36 rotates, the PMG rotor 32 and exciter rotor 34 also rotate. A position sensing device, such as a resolver 44, may also be included in the starter/generator system 20 to supply a signal representative of the main starter/generator rotor 36 position to the starter/generator control unit 28. This position signal is used to control the AC power supplied to the main starter/generator stator 40 and to the exciter 24 such that the maximum torque is generated

    [0012] With reference to Figure 2, the starter/generator system 20 may be housed within a generator housing 50 having a terminal housing section 52. The terminal housing section 52 may be an integral part of the generator housing 50, or may be a separate part mounted thereto. In either case, the terminal housing section 52 provides the electrical interface to external equipment and systems. In particular, one or more terminal assemblies 54 are each mounted to the generator housing 50 in the terminal housing section 52 and provide the electrical interface.

    [0013] The terminal assembly 54 generally includes a terminal board 56 which contains one or more terminal posts 58 and supports terminal connections 60 and passthroughs 62 (also illustrated in Figure 3). The terminal board 56 is mounted to the housing 50 through fasteners F such as bolts or the like which are threaded into the housing 50. The terminal board 56 and passthroughs 62 may be manufactured of a non-metallic material such as Torlon® Polyamide plastic while the terminal posts 58 and terminal connections 60 are manufactured of electrically conductive materials such as a steel alloy or copper alloy respectively.

    [0014] The terminal posts 58 extend from one side 56A (Figure 4) of the terminal board 56 and the passthroughs 62 are engaged with an opposite side 56B (Figure 5) of the terminal board 56. In one disclosed non-limiting embodiment, the terminal posts 58 are offset from the passthroughs 62 (Figure 3). That is, the terminal posts 58 are defined along a first axis A and the passthroughs 62 are defined along a second axis B. The terminal connections 60 extend through the passthroughs 62 and are in electrical contact with the terminal posts 58.

    [0015] With reference to Figure 3, each passthrough 62 includes a generally annular body 63 with a first radially extending flange 64 and a second radially extending flange 66 (Figure 6). The first radially extending flange 64 includes a stepped surface 68 (Figure 7) between a first radially extending flange section 70 that is of a diameter greater than the second radially extending flange 66 and a second radially extending flange section 72 which is of a diameter generally equivalent to the second radially extending flange 66.

    [0016] The second radially extending flange section 72 and the second radially extending flange 66 are received within a bore 76 in the housing 50 such that the first radially extending flange section 70 covers a portion of the housing 50 and increase the creep path from the terminal connection 60 to the housing 50. That is, the first radially extending flange section 70 extends beyond the diameter of the bore 76. A first seal 80 such as an O-ring may be positioned around the passthrough 62 between the second radially extending flange section 72 and the second radially extending flange 66 provide a leak tight seal between the inside and outside of the generator housing 50 to contain oil therein. A second seal 82 such as an O-ring may also be positioned around a pin 84 of the terminal connection 60 and the passthrough 62 to facilitate the leak tight seal between the inside and outside of the generator housing 50. It should be understood that the pin 84 at terminal connection 60 may be a unitary component which is welded or otherwise fitted together.

    [0017] The terminal board 56 includes a multiple of interrupted apertures 78 (Figures 4 and 5) which each receive the generally annular body 63 of the passthrough 62. The opposite side 56B of the terminal board 56 also includes an interface 86 which at least partially receives the first radially extending flange section 70. The interrupted apertures 78 are apertures having an interrupted periphery. The interface 86 in one disclosed non-limiting embodiment may include semi-circular recessed areas defined about the interrupted aperture 78 which receive each of the first radially extending flange sections 70 to further orient and restrain each passthrough 62 with respect to the terminal board 56.

    [0018] The passthroughs 62 disclosed herein increase clearance between conducting materials and also improve the physical shielding of the terminals to not only improve clearance performance but also improve creepage performance by lengthening or extending the path over the surface of the non-conducting material.

    [0019] It should be understood that like reference numerals identify corresponding or similar elements throughout the several drawings. It should also be understood that although a particular component arrangement is disclosed in the illustrated embodiment, other arrangements will benefit herefrom.

    [0020] Although particular step sequences are claimed, it should be understood that steps may be performed in any order, unless otherwise indicated.

    [0021] The foregoing description is exemplary rather than defined by the limitations within. Various non-limiting embodiments are disclosed herein, however, one of ordinary skill in the art would recognize that various modifications and variations in light of the above teachings will fall within the scope of the appended claims. It is therefore to be understood that within the scope of the appended claims, the disclosure may be practiced other than as specifically described. For that reason the appended claims should be studied to determine the scope of the present invention.


    Claims

    1. A terminal assembly (54) comprising:

    a terminal board (56);

    a passthrough (62) with a first radially extending flange (64) and a second radially extending flange (66); and

    a terminal connection (60) that extends through said passthrough;

    characterised by:

    an interrupted aperture (78) in the terminal board and an interface (86) defined at least partially around said interrupted aperture; and

    a terminal post (58) mounted to said terminal board along a first axis (A),

    wherein said passthrough is defined along a second axis (B) offset from said first axis,

    wherein said passthrough extends through said interrupted aperture,

    wherein said first radially extending flange is engaged with said interface; and

    wherein the terminal connection is in electrical contact with said terminal post.


     
    2. The terminal assembly as recited in claim 1, wherein said interface is semi-circular.
     
    3. The terminal assembly as recited in claim 1 or 2, wherein said first radially extending flange includes a stepped surface between a first radially extending flange section (70) of a diameter greater than that of said second radially extending flange and a second radially extending flange section (72) of a diameter generally equivalent to that of said second radially extending flange.
     
    4. The terminal assembly as recited in claim 3, wherein said first radially extending flange section is engaged with said interface.
     
    5. The terminal assembly as recited in any preceding claim, wherein said first radially extending flange is of a diameter greater than that of said second radially extending flange.
     
    6. A starter-generator (20) for a gas turbine engine comprising:

    a housing having a bore (76); and

    the terminal assembly as recited in any preceding claim,

    wherein said interrupted aperture is aligned with said bore, and

    wherein said second radially extending flange is located within said bore.


     
    7. A method of installing a terminal assembly (20) in a starter-generator comprising:

    installing a passthrough (62) with a first radially extending flange (64) and a second radially extending flange (66); and

    mounting a terminal connection (60) that extends through said passthrough;

    characterised by:

    installing the passthrough at least partially through an interrupted aperture (78) with an interface (86) defined at least partially around the interrupted aperture, wherein the first radially extending flange is engaged with the interface;

    mounting a terminal post (58) to a terminal board along a first axis (A); and

    mounting the passthrough along a second axis (B) offset and parallel to the first axis;

    wherein the terminal connection is in electrical contact with said terminal post.


     
    8. The method as recited in claim 7, wherein the first radially extending flange includes a stepped surface between a first radially extending flange section (70) of a diameter greater than that of the second radially extending flange and a second radially extending flange section (72) of a diameter generally equivalent to that of the second radially extending flange.
     


    Ansprüche

    1. Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung (54), umfassend:

    ein Klemmbrett (56);

    eine Durchleitung (62) mit einem ersten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch (64) und einem zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch (66); und

    eine Klemmstelle (60), die sich durch die Durchleitung erstreckt;

    gekennzeichnet durch:

    eine unterbrochene Öffnung (78) im Klemmbrett und eine Schnittstelle (86), die mindestens teilweise um die unterbrochene Öffnung definiert ist; und

    eine Polklemme (58), die an das Klemmbrett entlang einer ersten Achse (A) montiert ist,

    wobei die Durchleitung entlang einer zweiten Achse (B) versetzt von der ersten Achse definiert ist,

    wobei die Durchleitung sich durch die unterbrochene Öffnung erstreckt,

    wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flansch in die Schnittstelle einrastet; und

    wobei die Klemmstelle in elektrischem Kontakt mit der Polklemme steht.


     
    2. Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung nach Anspruch 1, wobei die Schnittstelle halbrund ist.
     
    3. Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung nach Anspruch 1 oder 2, wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flansch eine abgestufte Oberfläche zwischen einem ersten sich radial erstreckenden Flanschbereich (70) mit einem Durchmesser, der größer als der vom zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch ist, und einem zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flanschbereich (72) mit einem Durchmesser, der allgemein gleichwertig mit dem vom zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch ist, beinhaltet.
     
    4. Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung nach Anspruch 3, wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flanschbereich in die Schnittstelle einrastet.
     
    5. Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung nach einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche, wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flansch einen Durchmesser aufweist, der größer ist als der vom zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch.
     
    6. Startergenerator (20) für eine Gasturbine, umfassend:

    ein Gehäuse mit einem Bohrloch (76); und

    die Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung nach einem der vorstehenden Ansprüche,

    wobei die unterbrochene Öffnung an dem Bohrloch ausgerichtet ist, und

    wobei der zweite sich radial erstreckende Flansch sich innerhalb des Bohrlochs befindet.


     
    7. Verfahren zum Installieren einer Endanschlussklemmvorrichtung (20) in einem Startergenerator, umfassend:

    Installieren einer Durchleitung (62) mit einem ersten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch (64) und einem zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch (66); und

    Montieren einer Klemmstelle (60), die sich durch die Durchleitung erstreckt;

    gekennzeichnet durch:

    Installieren der Durchleitung mindestens teilweise durch eine unterbrochene Öffnung (78) mit einer Schnittstelle (86), die mindestens teilweise um die unterbrochene Öffnung definiert ist, wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flansch in die Schnittstelle einrastet;

    Montieren einer Polklemme (58) an ein Klemmbrett entlang einer ersten Achse (A); und

    Montieren der Durchleitung entlang einer zweiten Achse (B), die versetzt von und parallel zur ersten Achse ist;

    wobei die Klemmstelle in elektrischem Kontakt mit der Polklemme steht.


     
    8. Verfahren nach Anspruch 7, wobei der erste sich radial erstreckende Flansch eine abgestufte Oberfläche zwischen einem ersten sich radial erstreckenden Flanschbereich (70) mit einem Durchmesser, der größer als der vom zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch ist, und einem zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flanschbereich (72) mit einem Durchmesser, der allgemein gleichwertig mit dem vom zweiten sich radial erstreckenden Flansch ist, beinhaltet.
     


    Revendications

    1. Ensemble borne de terminaison (54) comprenant :

    une plaque de borne de terminaison (56) ;

    une fonction d'intercommunication (62) avec une première bride s'étendant radialement (64) et une seconde bride s'étendant radialement (66) ; et

    un raccordement de borne de terminaison (60) qui s'étend à travers ladite fonction d'intercommunication ;

    caractérisé par :

    une ouverture interrompue (78) dans la plaque de borne de terminaison et une interface (86) définie au moins partiellement autour de ladite ouverture interrompue ; et

    un montant de borne de terminaison (58) monté sur ladite plaque de borne de terminaison le long d'un premier axe (A),

    dans lequel ladite fonction d'intercommunication est définie le long d'un second axe (B) décalé dudit premier axe,

    dans lequel ladite fonction d'intercommunication s'étend à travers ladite ouverture interrompue,

    dans lequel ladite première bride s'étendant radialement vient en prise avec ladite interface ; et

    dans lequel le raccordement de borne de terminaison est en contact électrique avec ledit montant de borne de terminaison.


     
    2. Ensemble borne de terminaison selon la revendication 1, dans lequel ladite interface est semicirculaire.
     
    3. Ensemble borne de terminaison selon la revendication 1 ou 2, dans lequel ladite première bride s'étendant radialement comporte une surface étagée entre une première section de bride s'étendant radialement (70) d'un diamètre supérieur à celui de ladite seconde bride s'étendant radialement et une seconde section de bride s'étendant radialement (72) d'un diamètre généralement équivalent à celui de ladite seconde bride s'étendant radialement.
     
    4. Ensemble borne de terminaison selon la revendication 3, dans lequel ladite première bride s'étendant radialement vient en prise avec ladite interface.
     
    5. Ensemble borne de terminaison selon une quelconque revendication précédente, dans lequel ladite première bride s'étendant radialement est d'un diamètre supérieur à celui de ladite seconde bride s'étendant radialement.
     
    6. Démarreur-générateur (20) pour un moteur à turbine à gaz comprenant :

    un boîtier ayant un alésage (76) ; et

    l'ensemble borne de terminaison selon une quelconque revendication précédente,

    dans lequel ladite ouverture interrompue est alignée avec ledit alésage, et

    dans lequel ladite seconde bride s'étendant radialement est située à l'intérieur dudit alésage.


     
    7. Procédé d'installation d'un ensemble borne de terminaison (20) dans un démarreur-générateur comprenant :

    l'installation d'une fonction d'intercommunication (62) avec une première bride s'étendant radialement (64) et une seconde bride s'étendant radialement (66) ; et

    le montage d'un raccordement de borne de terminaison (60) qui s'étend à travers ladite fonction d'intercommunication ;

    caractérisé par :

    l'installation de la fonction d'intercommunication au moins partiellement à travers une ouverture interrompue (78) avec une interface (86) définie au moins partiellement autour de l'ouverture interrompue, dans lequel la première bride s'étendant radialement vient en prise avec l'interface ;

    le montage d'un montant de borne de terminaison (58) sur une plaque de borne de terminaison le long d'un premier axe (A) ; et

    le montage de la fonction d'intercommunication le long d'un second axe (B) décalé et parallèle au premier axe ;

    dans lequel le raccordement de borne de terminaison est en contact électrique avec ledit montant de borne de terminaison.


     
    8. Procédé selon la revendication 7, dans lequel la première bride s'étendant radialement comporte une surface étagée entre une première section de bride s'étendant radialement (70) d'un diamètre supérieur à celui de la seconde bride s'étendant radialement et une seconde section de bride s'étendant radialement (72) d'un diamètre généralement équivalent à celui de la seconde bride s'étendant radialement.
     




    Drawing


















    REFERENCES CITED IN THE DESCRIPTION



    This list of references cited by the applicant is for the reader's convenience only. It does not form part of the European patent document. Even though great care has been taken in compiling the references, errors or omissions cannot be excluded and the EPO disclaims all liability in this regard.

    Patent documents cited in the description