Wind Turbine Dynamics

Sandy Butterfield Workshop on Research Needs For Wind Resource Characterization January 14, 2008

Outline of Presentation
Design process overview What have we learned (so far) What’s working What’s not What will it take to meet COE goals

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


First a Little History
Late 70s – early 80s research prototypes Demonstrated large turbines could be made Not economical
MOD-1 2 MW

MOD-2 (2.5 MW) MOD-5 (3.2 MW) MOD-0A 200 kW

WTS-4 4.2 MW SNL 34m VAWT

Westinghouse 600 kW

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Small Companies Chose Small Turbines
Early 80s wind farms in California Economics were better Reliability was poor

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Evolution of Commercial U.S. Wind Technology (and Design Process)

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Design Process Evolution
– – – Extreme load design Minimal testing No standards Extensive structural dynamic load testing New structural dynamic design tools Turbulence models ( 1D homogeneous) Fatigue load dominated design Standards document design process Predict, test, tune, evolve design Greater investment in:
• • • • • • • • Design load accuracy Turbulence models (Homogeneous, 3D correlated) Dynamic coupling Component development Controls for load mitigation Hydrodynamic loading Environmental characterization 1000s of Design Load Cases

– – – – – – –


Site specific design

Rotor diameter matching to site conditions (wind) • Site assessment 2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Importance of Accurate Loads
This is usually a matter of repeated loads or environmental effects (Load, temperature, moisture, etc.) Material resistance to repeated loads is both sensitive and variable. A small load uncertainty results in an enormous lifetime uncertainty. A large margin on the mean life is required to avoid early failures

Intensity of the load

Uncertainty in Load

Uncertainty in Lifetime

Number of cycles survived
2006 Wind Program Peer Review

Logarithmic plot


Inflow Characterization is Critical for High-Reliability Systems
Reduced Failure Rates Improved O&M

Accurate Loads Design Requirements

High-Reliability Systems

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Design Approach
Optimize Performance
– Aerodynamic efficiency – Maximize swept area
• Site specific

Estimate Loads
– Turbulent inflow – Aerodynamics (steady & unsteady) – Structural dynamics

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Must reconcile wake and local aerodynamics
– Blade element/momentum – Dynamic inflow – Lifting line theory

Wake Aero

Airfoil/blade geometry characteristics Time variant applied forces Integrate forces to power curve Power/Rayleigh probability wind distribution Energy estimates
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Local Blade Aero

First Maximize Rotor Efficiency

Increasing noise

High tip speed ratio rotors = high efficiency & low solidity (blade area/swept area)
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Performance: Maximize Area
For Maximum Power:

16 ⎛ 1 3⎞ P= ⎜ ρ AVw ⎟ 27 ⎝ 2 ⎠
The Betz Limit

1 Vi = Vw 3

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Typical 5 MW Power and Thrust
Power Curve from a Specific Turbine Site Wind Probability Density Thrust Curve from Turbine Site Specific Life Time Load Matrices Site Specific Energy Estimates

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Measured Electrical Output of a Wind Turbine


Power Standard Deviation

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Dynamic Loads
Mean tower base bending loads decrease in high winds Fatigue equivalent loads increase Energy available decreases in higher winds

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Estimating Loads (over 20 year life) Turbulence Drives Turbine Dynamics

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Turbulence models
3 components Based on von Karmon isotropic spectrum Ten minute simulations Spatial coherence models Turbulence intensity set by IEC Design Class Tuned to site specific turbulence intensity data for site suitability assessment

Eddy Vorticity Field Associated with a Fully Turbulent Inflow
Looking down from above
turbine rotor

Neil Kelley 2005 2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Design Wind Modeling
Forecasting Models Turbulence Model

Wind Waves Swell Waves

Energy Spectrum of Wind Speed Fluctuation in the Atmosphere
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Deterministic Wind Models
Simple models of extreme events Alternative to extreme turbulence model Specifies gust characteristics
EDC Wind direction change, θ (t ) (deg)

IEC 61400-1 ed3 (ECD)

Combined gusts with direction changes Facilitates analysis of unfavorable phasing between control system events and gusts
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40 30 20 10 0 -5 0 Time, t (s) 5 10


IEC 61400-1 Onshore Turbine Design Classes

Table 1 - Basic parameters for wind turbine classes[1]
Wind Turbine Class Vref A B C (m/s) Iref (-) Iref (-) Iref (-) I 50 II 42,5 0,16 0,14 0,12 III 37.5 S Values Specified by the Designer

In Table 1, the parameter values apply at hub height and Vref is the reference wind speed average over 10 minutes, •A designates the category for higher turbulence characteristics, B designates the category for medium turbulence characteristics, C designates the category for lower turbulence characteristics and Iref is the expected value of the turbulence intensity[2] at 15 m/s.

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Coupled Aero-elastic/Hydro-elastic Design Codes
External Conditions Applied Loads Wind Turbine Control System



Rotor Dynamics

Drivetrain Dynamics

Power Generation

Nacelle Dynamics

Tower Dynamics TurbSim HydroDyn Waves & Currents AeroDyn Hydrodynamics Soil-Struct. Interaction

Substructure Dynamics


Foundation Dynamics


2006 Wind Program Peer Review


What's Working
98% reported availability Rotor performance excellent (80% of theoretical limit) CapEx drastically reduced Blade Development Product evolution strategy Power quality control

Design process, improved design tools, Standards Steady aero codes, airfoils, testing Accurate design tools, load control, quality control Standards (design, test, certify) Stretch rotor, control loads Power electronics

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


What's Not Working
Gearboxes OpEx too high CapEx still too high to DOE goals Rotor stretching strategy hitting limits

bearing failures, inaccurate internal loads? "unscheduled maintenance", low reliability, lack O&M automation lack of fatigue load and deflection control tower clearance limit, materials, aeroacoustics limiting tip speed, dynamic

To meet DOE cost goals Stop gearbox failures Need new design strategy Better site specific characteristics Evolve design tools Evolve design process

Ludeca, Inc.
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Rotor Innovations key to Scaling Strategy

Commercial Blade Data

Finite Element Computer Model

20 Weight (10 kg) 15 10 5 0 20

Modeling Results
Modeling Results - R

Scaling of Rotors
Commercial Blades - R


40 Rotor Radius (m)



2006 Wind Program Peer Review


How well has the strategy worked? Can we meet the COE goals?
RNA Mass / Swept Area
40.0 35.0 Mass/swept area (kg/m^2) 30.0 25.0 20.0 15.0 10.0 5.0 0.0 40 60 80 100 120 140 Diameter (m)
WindPact Baselines WindPact Task#5 Final NREL Baseline 5MW GPRA 2005 - 2025 Estimates RePower 5MW

Offshore Turbines

Enercon 6MW Vestas 4.5MW MultiBrid 5MW GE 3.6MW Clipper V80 V90 Siemens




DOE COE pathway (cents/kwh)

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


What will it take?
Design code enhancements
– Dynamic coupling of major components – Steady & unsteady aerodynamics – Aeroacoustics (higher tip speeds, reduced tower shadow signature)

Advanced controls (load reduction, deflection control) System and subsystem innovation (lower cost, greater reliability)
– Rotor (reduced dynamic loads) – Blades (increased flexibility, longer fatigue life) – Drivetrain (greater reliability, lower cost)

Site specific turbulence characterization and linkage between:
– – – – Local atmospheric physics 50m – 200m Inflow turbulence (3D coherent structures?) Unsteady aerodynamic response Wake to rotor interactions

2006 Wind Program Peer Review

Carpe Ventem

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Gaps (according to Sandy)
Aerodynamics - More accurate steady & unsteady aero models Aeroacoustics (limits high speed flexible rotors & downwind option) Increasing flexibility w/o complexity, cost & failure rates Accurate prediction of coupled dynamic rotor loads Greater fidelity between loads codes and component design codes Greater drive-train reliability while reducing cost and weight. MIMO Control of turbulence & extreme loads without firm measure of inputs (need robust sensor technology) More accurate inflow characterization, especially greater than 100m. Linkage between local atmospheric/turbulence/aerodynamic/wakes

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Lifelong O&M (“unscheduled maintenance” becoming critical) Lighter rotors, higher tip speeds, more flexible blades (lower loads) Twist/flap coupling Drivetrain innovation Controls for load reduction Offshore design concepts incorporated into onshore turbines (load control, component

Onshore COE Cost Breakdown
LRC & Lease Cost 10% Electrical Infrastructure 7% Foundation 3% Misc BOS 11% O&M (After Tax) 9%

Turbine 60%

Offshore COE Cost Breakdown
O&M (After Tax) 13%
LRC & Lease Cost 6% Electrical Infrastructure 12% Eng/Permits 4% Support Structure 14% Misc BOS 13% Turbine 32%

placement, design for reliability, condition monitoring)
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Offshore Warranty 6%

Can rotor improvements help the rest of the system?
WindPact Rotor study shows benefits of:
– Controlling tower dynamics – Passive blade load relief through twist/flap coupling – High tip speed/low solidity blades

Need follow up system study
– SeaCon Turbine study – Perform system optimization – Apply practical implementation experience

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Advanced Drivetrain R&D



2006 Wind Program Peer Review


45-Meter Fatigue Test
Larger blades becoming more flexible Design innovations require design verification Aerodynamic advancements improve performance. Structural improvements increase fatigue tolerance and reduce dynamic loads.

Single-axis Flap Fatigue Test Using B-REX Test System.

45-meter Blade Root Mount

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Horns Rev, Denmark 80 Turbines, 160 MW

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Aeroelastic Simulators
Codes integrate :
– – – – – – Turbulent inflow Aerodynamic forces Coupled structural dynamics Controls Wave loading Other environmental effects

2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Structural Dynamics

Oblique Inflow Gyroscopic Forces Boundary Layer Gust

Non-stationary Aerodynamic Loads Tower Torsion Yawing Rolling

Wind Mass Loads

Blade Flatwise Deflection

Pitching Tower Shadow Blade Edgewise Deflection

Tower Deflection

Centrifugal Forces

Blade Torsion

Blade vibrations interact with aerodynamic forces = aeroelasticity Mode shapes and natural frequencies critical
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Floating Offshore Turbine Research
Interface of SML to FAST and ADAMS
Wave Env. (Motion, field exp., etc.)
Wave Spectrum

Wind Field (TurbSim, field exp., etc.)

Freq. To Time (Motion)
Wave History

Aerodynamics (AeroDyn)
Aerodynamic Loads (lift, drag, pitch mom.) Platform Motions (defl., vel., accel.) Hydrodynamic Loads (added mass, damping) Platform Pos. Mooring Loads (restoring) Measurements Moorings (power, loads, etc.) Actuator Inputs (blade pitch, gen. torque, yaw) Blade Motions (blade pitch, element pos. & vel.) Time Series Motions (defl., vel., accel.) Time Series Loads (forces, moments)

Time-Domain Hydrodynamics (Motion)
Added Mass & Damping Matrices

Structural Dynamics (FAST, ADAMS)


Freq.-Domain Hydrodynamics (Swim)
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Controls (user-defined)

Time series simulations
Nonlinearities require time marching solution approach
– Control system – Aerodynamics – Large rotations

Load combinations Limit ability to simulate life time. requires extrapolation to life time load spectrum Extreme conditions simulated and added into the load matrix 1.35 load factor applied to all unfavorable loads estimates.
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


Turbine Design Evolution
80s: (US dominated market)
– US = Light weight/flexible – Euro = Heavy/stiff

90s: (Euro dominated market)
– – – – – Low speed = low tip noise^5 Heavy/stiff evolved Lighter/larger rotors Variable speed Custom airfoils/tips

2008: (World market)
– Dynamically active – Flexible for load shedding – Power quality improvements
2006 Wind Program Peer Review


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