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Potential order-of-magnitude enhancement of wind farm power density via counter-rotating vertical-axis wind turbine arrays

Dabiri, John O. (2011) Potential order-of-magnitude enhancement of wind farm power density via counter-rotating vertical-axis wind turbine arrays. Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy , 3 (4). Art. No. 043104. ISSN 1941-7012. http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20111024-094516155

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Abstract

Modern wind farms comprised of horizontal-axis wind turbines (HAWTs) require significant land resources to separate each wind turbine from the adjacent turbine wakes. This aerodynamic constraint limits the amount of power that can be extracted from a given wind farm footprint. The resulting inefficiency of HAWT farms is currently compensated by using taller wind turbines to access greater wind resources at high altitudes, but this solution comes at the expense of higher engineering costs and greater visual, acoustic, radar, and environmental impacts. We investigated the use of counter-rotating vertical-axis wind turbines (VAWTs) in order to achieve higher power output per unit land area than existing wind farms consisting of HAWTs. Full-scale field tests of 10-m tall VAWTs in various counter-rotating configurations were conducted under natural wind conditions during summer 2010. Whereas modern wind farms consisting of HAWTs produce 2–3 W of power per square meter of land area, these field tests indicate that power densities an order of magnitude greater can potentially be achieved by arranging VAWTs in layouts that enable them to extract energy from adjacent wakes and from above the wind farm. Moreover, this improved performance does not require higher individual wind turbine efficiency, only closer wind turbine spacing and a sufficient vertical flux of turbulence kinetic energy from the atmospheric surface layer. The results suggest an alternative approach to wind farming that has the potential to concurrently reduce the cost, size, and environmental impacts of wind farms.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.3608170 DOIArticle
https://arxiv.org/abs/1010.3656arXivDiscussion Paper
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Dabiri, John O.0000-0002-6722-9008
Additional Information:© 2011 American Institute of Physics. Received 7 February 2011; accepted 14 June 2011; published online 19 July 2011. The author gratefully acknowledges funding from the National Science Foundation Energy for Sustainability program (Grant No. CBET-0725164) and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. The author also thanks R. W. Whittlesey for providing assistance in establishing the satellite data connection to the field site.
Group:GALCIT
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSFCBET-0725164
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:aerodynamics, environmental factors, wind power plants, wind turbines
Classification Code:PACS: 88.50.J-; 88.50.G-; 89.60.-k
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20111024-094516155
Persistent URL:http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20111024-094516155
Official Citation: Potential order-of-magnitude enhancement of wind farm power density via counter-rotating vertical-axis wind turbine arrays John O. Dabiri J. Renewable Sustainable Energy 3, 043104 (2011); doi:10.1063/1.3608170 (12 pages)
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:27369
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:24 Oct 2011 18:30
Last Modified:24 Apr 2019 17:20

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