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Wind Farm Wake

Hasager et al WindTech Figure1Fog Shows Amazing Details over North Sea Wind Farm

On 25 January 2016 at 12:45 UTC several photographs of the offshore wind farm Horns Rev 2 were taken by helicopter pilot Gitte Lundorff with an iPhone. A very shallow layer of fog covered the sea. The photos of the fog over the sea dramatically pictured the offshore wind farm wake. Researchers got together to investigate the atmospheric conditions at the time of the photos by analysing local meteorological observations and wind turbine information, satellite remote sensing and nearby radiosonde data. Two wake models and one mesoscale model were used to model the case and explain what was seen.

By Charlotte Bay Hasager, Ioanna Karagali, Patrick Volker and Søren Juhl Andersen Technical University of Denmark, Denmark and Nicolai Gayle Nygaard, DONG Energy, Denmark

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A Closer Look at the WakeBlaster Project

Virtual Wind Farm Simulation

Wakeblaster Image 1The WakeBlaster project team was formed in January 2017 and is an interdisciplinary team of six dedicated scientists, software engineers, expert computer modellers and wind industry professionals. Together the team has over 55 years of experience in the wind industry. Its mission is to produce a cloud-based software component which delivers down-to-earth, cost-effective, scalable and dynamic yet accurate wind farm simulations.

By Dr Wolfgang Schlez, Director of ProPlanEn, UK

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Flow Characterisation in Complex Terrain

Barthelmie Pryor Figure 1Use of Lidars to Quantify Flow and Wind Turbine Wakes

Wind turbine nameplate capacities (and physical dimensions) are increasing and turbines are being deployed in increasingly complex/harsh environments. Hence, shortcomings are becoming evident in our understanding of the flow parameters of relevance to wind resources and turbine loading in inhomogeneous settings. Furthermore, propagation and dissipation of wakes from turbines on ridges and/or on escarpments and/or when flow interacts with vegetation are incompletely understood. While model predictions of the mean and time-evolving components of flow may be imperfect in simple topography, model errors tend to be relatively small. However, systematic and non-trivial model biases can exist in complex terrain. Hence there is a need for full-scale experiments using remote sensing technologies (notably lidars) to quantify key flow characteristics and provide data that can be used in model development and evaluation. Here we describe some key research opportunities and challenges facing these experimental investigations and present results from our recent field campaigns.

By Rebecca J. Barthelmie and Sara C. Pryor, Cornell University, USA

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Accuracy of Wind Farm Noise Predictions

Engie illustration 1The Differences between Measured and Predicted Noise Levels from Wind Farms

When planning a new wind farm, it is essential to obtain a reliable estimate of the future noise impact. An underestimation of the noise impact can lead to complaints and subsequent possible loss of efficiency due to mitigation schemes like a temporary shutdown or the use of curtailment strategies. On the other hand, an overestimation of the noise impact leads to an underdevelopment of the wind park potential.

By Luc Schillemans, Tractebel, Belgium

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Magnetic Gearboxes for Wind Turbines

EPRI fig 1Exploring New Technologies for Extreme-Scale Turbines

Larger turbines – beyond today’s multi-megawatt onshore and offshore machines – are one of the most attractive options for reducing the cost of wind energy. Continued technology scale-up to rated capacities of 10MW and beyond requires novel concepts for overcoming the fundamental limitations of today’s turbine designs and materials, including structural constraints of drive-train components. This article explores how magnetic gearbox technologies could provide solutions.

By Luis Cerezo, Technical Executive, EPRI, USA

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Wind Assets Lifetime Extension

UL Figure 1How to Calculate the Remaining Useful Life (RUL) of Wind Farms

Wind farms are part of our surroundings and therefore are in general fairly accessible power generation facilities. Safety is key to both continuation of operations and a corporate responsibility towards workers and third parties. It must be safeguarded through a comprehensive process including analytical RUL calculation, inspections and certification to confirm that there is a limited risk exposure while the installation continues operating. Once the real status of the wind turbines is characterised, smart operational strategies can be deployed to maximise the return on the investment.

By Jose Javier Ripa, Business Development Manager, UL DEWI, Spain

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A Buoyant Future

Reducing Cost and Risk in Floating Offshore Wind

Ore Catepult Figure 1In recent years, floating wind has gradually matured as a technology, progressing from being the subject of academic research to a handful of full-scale, stand-alone prototype projects (Hywind in Scotland, Principle Power in Portugal and the FORWARD project in Japan), to the development of multiple pre-commercial arrays. Technological advances in floating wind will open up opportunities to exploit the abundant wind resource in deeper water sites where it is currently not possible to deploy fixed-bottom foundations, making this an important area of research for the offshore wind industry. This article analyses the costs and risks of the three most common types of floating wind structure and compares them to those of a fixed-bottom monopile wind farm. It also provides an outlook on the technology’s future and notes areas where further research is needed.

By Robert Proskovics and Gavin Smart, ORE Catapult, Glasgow, UK

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