Offshore wind farm optimisation: a comparison of performance between regular and irregular wind turbine layouts

M.V. Sickler, B.C. Ummels, M B Zaaijer, R. Schmehl, Katherine Dykes

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Layout optimisation is essential for improving the overall performance of offshore wind farms. During the past 15 years, the use of yield optimisation algorithms has resulted in a transition from regular to more irregular farm layouts. However, since the layout affects many factors, yield optimisation alone may not maximise the overall performance. In this paper, a comparative case study is presented to quantify the effect of the wind farm layout on the overall performance of offshore wind farms. The case study was performed to investigate two performance indicators: power performance, using yield calculations with windPRO, and wake-induced tower fatigue, using the Frandsen model. It is observed that irregular wind farm layouts have a higher annual energy production compared to regular layouts. Their power production is also more persistent and less sensitive to wind direction, improving predictability and thus the market value of power output. However, one turbine location in the irregular layout has a 24 % higher effective turbulence level, leading to additional tower fatigue. As a result, fatigue-driven tower designs would require increased wall thicknesses, which would result in higher capital costs for all turbine locations. It is demonstrated in this study that layout optimisation using minimum inter-turbine spacing effectively resolves the induced wake issue while maintaining high-yield performance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1225-1233
Number of pages9
JournalWind Energy Science
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2023

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