Planetary Gearbox Animation

Modern wind turbines use planetary gearboxes that turn tremendous loads from the wind into the mechanical motion that drives an electrical generator. These gearboxes have commercial uses as “speed reducers,” using a motor or engine to turn the high-speed shaft to do the hard of the low-speed shaft, which benefits from the force of the gearing.

In wind turbines, the gearboxes are used in reverse, wtih the wind turning the rotor that spins the low-speed shaft. This creates the much faster speeds needed to produce electricity.

The animation below shows how a planetary gearbox works.