Design of a distributed kite power control system

Uwe Fechner, Roland Schmehl

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Kite power is a promising innovative technology for converting wind energy into electricity at a higher capacity factor and, for many applications, at a lower cost than conventional wind turbines. However, accessing this potential depends substantially on the availability of sophisticated control systems. Delft University of Technology is developing a kite power generator which operates a tethered inflatable membrane wing in a pumping cycle. The flight trajectory is controlled by an actuator unit suspended below the wing and communicates with the ground station control centre via a fast and reliable wireless link. The link is also used to transmit the data of the on-board sensors to the ground. In a future wind park of many kite power systems, the individual kites and ground stations have to communicate among each other, to avoid collisions and to optimize the total energy output of the park. A preparatory analysis has shown that the current prototype would significantly benefit from a distributed control system approach, achieving higher efficiency and increased operational flexibility. For larger installations a distributed control system would be mandatory anyway. For these reasons, a distributed control system with a flexible architecture has been developed. The unique design and first test results are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2012 IEEE International Conference on Control Applications, CCA 2012
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012
Event2012 IEEE International Conference on Control Applications, CCA 2012 - Dubrovnik, Croatia
Duration: 3 Oct 20125 Oct 2012


Conference2012 IEEE International Conference on Control Applications, CCA 2012

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