Wake effect investigation underway

13 December 2017

The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator has announced a new €2.3 million project, a series of wind farm control trials designed to demonstrate how effective implementation of control strategies to reduce wake effects can reduce the cost of offshore wind. The project will investigate strategies to improve energy generation across an entire wind farm, rather than individual turbines.The project is backed by EnBW, E.ON, innogy, Statoil and Vattenfal.
Control of the turbines will centre on adjusting the blade angle of attack (pitch) and rotation of the nacelle (yaw). It is anticipated that this strategy will, by reducing wake effects, increase the total wind energy yield and reduce fatigue, resulting in a lower levelised cost of energy (LCoE).
The study will be the largest and most comprehensive real-life demonstration of its kind and will build on previous simulation-based studies. Based on these previous studies and simulations, it is expected that adopting blade pitch or yaw-based strategies will result in an increase in energy yield of between 0.5 and 3.5 %. It is also expected that load reductions of up to 50 % for some wind turbine components would result, meaning increased component life and therefore reduced operational and maintenance costs.
The first stage of the project involves analysis to determine the most suitable wind farm test site for the trials and an optimisation of the control strategies. The selected wind farm will have extensive measurement equipment installed as part of the validation process for the simulations, including eight nacelle mounted Windar Photonics LiDARs, a scanning LiDAR and load measurements installed on individual turbines. The trials are expected to be undertaken in 2018 with full results available in 2019.

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