How to design an optimal wind farm?
Last month, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium and Denmark announced their intention to increase the number of wind turbines in the North Sea by a factor of ten. The team led by Dr Richard Stevens, a Featured Scientist at the University of Twente, is studying the complexities of wind flow that can occur among so many turbines. Using newly developed computer models, they calculate the optimal layout for new wind farms such as those planned in the North Sea. Wind turbines generate electricity by harnessing energy from the wind. In doing so, they reduce the wind speed in the wake of the turbine. This means that a wind turbine positioned directly behind another wind turbine will generate less power. “With two wind turbines these processes are manageable, but when you have hundreds, things become a lot more complicated,” says Stevens.
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Max Planck Gesellschaft
Centre for Scientific Computing