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Experimental studies of wind turbine wakes : power optimisation and meandering

by Medici, Davide

Abstract (Summary)
Wind tunnel studies of the wake behind model wind turbines with one, two and three blades have been made in order to get a better understanding of wake development as well as the possibility to predict the power output from downstream turbines working in the wake of an upstream one. Both two-component hot-wire anemometry and particle image velocimetry (PIV) have been used to map the flow field downstream as well as upstream the turbine. All three velocity components were measured both for the turbine rotor normal to the oncoming flow as well as with the turbine inclined to the free stream direction (the yaw angle was varied from 0 to 30 degrees). The measurements showed, as expected, a wake rotation in the opposite direction to that of the turbine. A yawed turbine is found to clearly deflect the wake flow to the side showing the potential of controlling the wake position by yawing the turbine. The power output of a yawed turbine was found to depend strongly on the rotor. The possibility to use active wake control by yawing an upstream turbine was evaluated and was shown to have a potential to increase the power output significantly for certain configurations. An unexpected feature of the flow was that spectra from the time signals showed the appearance of a low frequency fluctuation both in the wake and in the flow outside. This fluctuation was found both with and without free stream turbulence and also with a yawed turbine. The non-dimensional frequency (Strouhal number) was independent of the freestream velocity and turbulence level but increases with the yaw angle. However the low frequency fluctuations were only observed when the tip speed ratio was high. Porous discs have been used to compare the meandering frequencies and the cause in wind turbines seems to be related to the blade rotational frequency. It is hypothesized that the observed meandering of wakes in field measurements is due to this shedding.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:Kungliga Tekniska högskolan

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:TECHNOLOGY; Engineering mechanics; Fluid mechanics; wind energy; power optimisation; active control; yaw; vortex shedding; wake meandering

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2005

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