You are on page 1of 6

2015-04-21

Design and Certification of Small

Wind Turbines
David Wood
NSERC/ENMAX Professor of Renewable Energy
dhwood@ucalgary.ca

Small turbines come in a wide variety of shapes. There

is no established design as for large wind turbines

Outline
• Basic features of IEC 61400-2
• The Simple Load Model (SLM)
• Problems with SLM
• Conclusions

1
2015-04-21

Turbine Analysis Methods

(SLM)
• Aero-elastic analysis as for
large turbines
• Field testing as for large
turbines

2
2015-04-21

The SLM
Design Situation
Case
Description
Type of
Analysis
Simple equations and large safety
A Normal Operation Fatigue factors.
B Yawing Ultimate
Power production
C Yaw Error Ultimate
D Maximum Thrust Ultimate generator shaft
Power production plus E Maximum Rotational Speed Ultimate
occurrence of fault F Short at Load Connection Ultimate Load Case H is usually the largest for the tower
Shutdown G Shutdown (Braking) Ultimate

Transport, assembly,
J To be Stated by Manufacturer Ultimate
maintenance and repair

Ultimate strength
1.25

1.1
10.0

3.0

Safety factor for fatigue
Safety factor for ultimate
loads, gf Material safety factors are the
Simple load calculation 1.0 3.0 same for the SLM and aero-
Aero-elastic modelling with design data
1.0 1.35
elastic modeling
(rpm, power)

of Newcastle

3
2015-04-21

50 Equation for the blade root bending

Root bending moment (Nm)
Average moment (Nm)
moment in the SLM
40
Average + 2JΩω (Nm)
1
30 Average - 2JΩω (Nm) M 0,max 2
= 2 J Ω maxωmax + mbωmax Lrt Rcog + ( Qλ )design
6
20

10 The first term is the maximum

value of the gyroscopic moment –
0 this term is exact. Why should it
have a safety factor of 3?
-10
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Time (s)
12
10 The gyroscopic load is the main
8 load. It is transmitted to the main
6
Wind speed (ms) shaft, generator, and tower
4 Ω (x100 rpm)
2
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 J – blade inertia
200 Ωmax – max. blade rpm
Yaw rate °(/s)
Turbine yaw (°)
ωmax – max yaw rate
100

0
Wilson, S. V. R, Clausen, P. D. and Wood, D. H. (2008).
“Gyroscopic Moments on Small Wind Turbines Blades at High
-100
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Yaw Rates”, Trans IE Aust, Aus. J. Mech. Engg, 5, 1 - 9.
Time (s)

Tower Design

Main Requirements
But .... badly designed turbines are
• Maximum tensile stress does not
noisy
exceed allowable material stress

covered in SLM

• Tower top deflection is not excessive,

say < 5% of tower height. Not
specifically covered in SLM

IEC 61400-2 says:

“support structures shall also
meet local codes and
regulations”.

4
2015-04-21

Monopole Tower Design (1)

The simplest tower – the monopole. The bending
moment on tower at distance y from top: 18 m octagonal tower for a
But .... badly designed turbines are 5 kW wind turbine
y
( y ) = M 0 + Tmax y + 2 ρU 2 Cd ∫ yd ( y ) dy
M noisy
1
0

M0 – gyroscopic or other moment

Tmax – turbine thrust
Cd - tower drag coefficient
ρ,U - density and wind speed
(assumed constant)
d - “diameter”
M ( y )d ( y )
σ b,max =
2I ( y)
I(y) –moment of area and

σ max = σ b, max +
[ mtt + mt ( y)] g
A( y)
σmax is the axial stress due to the
bending moment and mass of turbine
mtt and tower, mt, and tower cross-
sectional area A

Monopole Tower Design (2)

Design uses Capacity Factor, CF to relate actual maximum stress to limiting stress, either
UTS or buckling
But resistance,

noisy CF = σ max / FA
Most “local codes” have CF ≈ 0.6, SLM has CF ≈ 1/3. Using SLM CF would double
the weight of the tower and double the cost. The drag coefficient, Cd, used in the
analysis is well known for simple geometries so why is the high safety factor (low
CF) used????

Height, h 18 m No. sections 3 Wind speed 50 m/s

Turbine mass,
170 kg Thrust, Tmax 2200 N Elastic modulus 200 GPa
mtt
Top diameter, Drag
0.17 m Base diameter dh 0.41 m 1.4
do coefficient, Cd
7800
UTS, Fy 350 MPa Material density ρtower Tower mass, mt 531 kg
kg/m3
Section Bottom section
3.75 mm 4.3 mm
thickness t1, t2 thickness, t3

5
2015-04-21

Duration Testing

Conclusions

IEC 61400-2 Simplified Load Model is a simple way to design a

turbine
• Simple equations + high safety factors
• Emphasis on blades and generator shaft
• High safety factor even when equations are well known
These safety factors are not consistent with those used in