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Open AccessArticle

Interaction of Wind Turbine Wakes under Various Atmospheric Conditions

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2018, 11(6), 1442;
Received: 3 May 2018 / Revised: 29 May 2018 / Accepted: 30 May 2018 / Published: 4 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Wind Turbines)
We present a numerical study of two utility-scale 5-MW turbines separated by seven rotor diameters. The effects of the atmospheric boundary layer flow on the turbine performance were assessed using large-eddy simulations. We found that the surface roughness and the atmospheric stability states had a profound effect on the wake diffusion and the Reynolds stresses. In the upstream turbine case, high surface roughness increased the wind shear, accelerating the decay of the wake deficit and increasing the Reynolds stresses. Similarly, atmospheric instabilities significantly expedited the wake decay and the Reynolds stress increase due to updrafts of the thermal plumes. The turbulence from the upstream boundary layer flow combined with the turbine wake yielded higher Reynolds stresses for the downwind turbine, especially in the streamwise component. For the downstream turbine, diffusion of the wake deficits and the sharp peaks in the Reynolds stresses showed faster decay than the upwind case due to higher levels of turbulence. This provides a physical explanation for how turbine arrays or wind farms can operate more efficiently under unstable atmospheric conditions, as it is based on measurements collected in the field. View Full-Text
Keywords: atmospheric boundary layer; wind turbines; energy capture atmospheric boundary layer; wind turbines; energy capture
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lee, S.; Vorobieff, P.; Poroseva, S. Interaction of Wind Turbine Wakes under Various Atmospheric Conditions. Energies 2018, 11, 1442.

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