Maximizing wind farm power output with the helix approach: Experimental validation and wake analysis using tomographic particle image velocimetry

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Abstract

Wind farm control can play a key role in reducing the negative impact of wakes on wind turbine power production. The helix approach is a recent innovation in the field of wind farm control, which employs individual blade pitch control to induce a helical velocity profile in a wind turbine wake. This forced meandering of the wake has turned out to be very effective for the recovery of the wake, increasing the power output of downstream turbines by a significant amount. This paper presents a wind tunnel study with two scaled wind turbine models of which the upstream turbine is operated with the helix approach. We used tomographic particle image velocimetry to study the dynamic behavior of the wake under the influence of the helix excitation. The measured flow fields confirm the wake recovery capabilities of the helix approach compared with normal operation. Additional emphasis is put on the effect of the helix approach on the breakdown of blade tip vortices, a process that plays an important role in re-energizing the wake. Measurements indicate that the breakdown of tip vortices and the resulting destabilization of the wake are enhanced significantly with the helix approach. Finally, turbine measurements show that the helix approach was able to increase the combined power for this particular two-turbine setup by as much as 15%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)463-482
Number of pages20
JournalWind Energy
Volume27
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Keywords

  • dynamic individual pitch control
  • experimental validation
  • the helix approach
  • tomographic piv
  • wind farm control
  • wind farm power maximization

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