Wind Farm Wake Effect Investigation Underway

wind farm
Credit: Vattenfall

By The Maritime Executive 12-10-2017 04:57:27

The Carbon Trust’s Offshore Wind Accelerator has announced a new €2.3 million ($2.7 million) project, 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 Vattenfall and will incorporate know-how from experts including DTU, ECN, Frazer-Nash Consultancy and Windar Photonics.

The turbine control will be altered by adjusting the blade angle of attack (pitch) and rotation of the nacelle (yaw). It is anticipated that such control strategies will reduce wake effects and therefore lower the levelized cost of energy (LCoE) by increasing the total wind energy yield and reducing fatigue. 

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 undertaken, it is expected that adopting blade pitch or yaw-based strategies would result in increase in energy yield of between 0.5 and 3.5 percent. It is also expected to possibly enable load reductions of up to 50 percent for some wind turbine components meaning increased component life therefore reduced operation 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 optimization 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 and full results are expected in 2019.