11:00 – 12:00
Seminar High Reynolds number wind turbine experiments
Claudia Brunner


One of the key challenges in the experimental study of wind turbines is the ability to create high Reynolds number flows in a laboratory setting. Conventional wind tunnel studies are typically conducted at Reynolds numbers that are two orders of magnitude lower than those of real wind turbine flows. This changes the nature of the turbulence, which makes it challenging to interpret results in the context of real wind turbines. In contrast, the Variable Density Turbulence Tunnel at the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization uses pressurized sulphur hexaflouride to achieve high Reynolds numbers at low velocities. An active grid injects turbulence with specific length and time-scales into the flow. This facility allows us to study wind turbine and wind farm flows at realistic tip speed ratios, Richardson numbers and turbulence Reynolds numbers, enabling unprecedented insight into the scaling laws governing these flows. Here, I present ongoing experiments in which we study the effect of inflow turbulence and velocity shear on the breakdown of the tip vortices behind a model turbine. Hot-wire measurements in the near wake demonstrate the strong effect of velocity shear on tip vortex breakdown. Lagrangian particle tracking will be used to further investigate these features.

Dr. Claudia Brunner is the group leader of the Minerva Fast Track Group on Turbulence and Wind Energy in the department of Prof. Bodenschatz at the MPI-DS. Her research focuses on experimental studies of large-scale fluid dynamics involving turbulence and unsteady effects, with a particular focus on wind energy. Before becoming a group leader in January 2023, Dr. Brunner was a postdoc with Prof. Bodenschatz. She received her PhD in May 2022 from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University, where she was advised by Prof. Marcus Hultmark. Dr. Brunner received a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship from the Department of Defense, and a Science, Technology and Environmental Policy Fellowship from the High Meadows Environmental Institute and the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. She holds an M.A. in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and a B.A. in International Relations from Stanford University.
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Max Planck Gesellschaft
4TU Precision Medicine
Centre for Scientific Computing