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Multi-Scale Simulation of Wind Farm Performance during a Frontal Passage

1
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94550, USA
2
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA
3
National Wind Institute, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX 79409, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2020, 11(3), 245; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos11030245
Received: 17 December 2019 / Revised: 1 February 2020 / Accepted: 2 February 2020 / Published: 29 February 2020
Predicting the response of wind farms to changing flow conditions is necessary for optimal design and operation. In this work, simulation and analysis of a frontal passage through a utility scale wind farm is achieved for the first time using a seamless multi-scale modeling approach. A generalized actuator disk (GAD) wind turbine model is used to represent turbine–flow interaction, and results are compared to novel radar observations during the frontal passage. The Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model is employed with a nested grid setup that allows for coupling between multi-scale atmospheric conditions and turbine response. Starting with mesoscale forcing, the atmosphere is dynamically downscaled to the region of interest, where the interaction between turbulent flows and individual wind turbines is simulated with 10 m grid spacing. Several improvements are made to the GAD model to mimic realistic turbine operation, including a yawing capability and a power output calculation. Ultimately, the model is able to capture both the dynamics of the frontal passage and the turbine response; predictions show good agreement with observed background velocity, turbine wake structure, and power output after accounting for a phase shift in the mesoscale forcing. This study demonstrates the utility of the WRF-GAD model framework for simulating wind farm performance under complex atmospheric conditions. View Full-Text
Keywords: wind turbine wakes; large-eddy simulation; generalized actuator disk model; Weather Research and Forecasting model wind turbine wakes; large-eddy simulation; generalized actuator disk model; Weather Research and Forecasting model
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  • Externally hosted supplementary file 1
    Doi: 10.5281/zenodo.3579571
    Link: https://zenodo.org/record/3579572#.Xfgqv1B7nUI
    Description: Animation from a multi-scale simulation of flow through a wind farm showing hub-height wind speed during a frontal passage event. The simulation was performed using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model using an embedded generalized actuator disk (GAD) wind turbine model.
MDPI and ACS Style

Arthur, R.S.; Mirocha, J.D.; Marjanovic, N.; Hirth, B.D.; Schroeder, J.L.; Wharton, S.; Chow, F.K. Multi-Scale Simulation of Wind Farm Performance during a Frontal Passage. Atmosphere 2020, 11, 245.

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