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Innovation in Wind Turbine Design

ISBN: 978-0-470-69981-2
316 pages
September 2011
Innovation in Wind Turbine Design (0470699817) cover image
Innovation in Wind Turbine Design addresses the fundamentals of design, the reasons behind design choices, and describes the methodology for evaluating innovative systems and components. Always referencing a state of the art system for comparison, Jamieson discusses the basics of wind turbine theory and design, as well as how to apply existing engineering knowledge to further advance the technology, enabling the reader to gain a thorough understanding of current technology before assessing where it can go in the future.

Innovation in Wind Turbine Design is divided into four main sections covering design background, technology evaluation, design themes and innovative technology examples:

  • Section 1 reviews aerodynamic theory and the optimization of rotor design, discusses wind energy conversion systems, drive trains, scaling issues, offshore wind turbines, and concludes with an overview of technology trends with a glimpse of possible future technology
  • Section 2 comprises a global view of the multitude of design options for wind turbine systems and develops evaluation methodology, including cost of energy assessment with some specific examples
  • Section 3 discusses recurrent design themes such as blade number, pitch or stall, horizontal or vertical axis
  • Section 4 considers examples of innovative technology with case studies from real-life commercial clients.

This groundbreaking synopsis of the state of the art in wind turbine design is must-have reading for professional wind engineers, power engineers and turbine designers, as well as consultants, researchers and academics working in renewable energy.

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Acknowledgements xiii

Foreword xv

Preface xvii

Introduction 1

0.1 Why Innovation? 1

0.2 The Challenge of Wind 2

0.3 The Specification of a Modern Wind Turbine 2

0.4 The Variability of the Wind 4

0.5 Commercial Wind Technology 4

0.6 Basis of Wind Technology Evaluation 5

0.6.1 Standard Design as Baseline 5

0.6.2 Basis of Technological Advantage 6

0.6.3 Security of Claimed Power Performance 6

0.6.4 Impact of Proposed Innovation 6

References 7

Part I DESIGN BACKGROUND

1 Rotor Aerodynamic Theory 11

1.1 Introduction 11

1.2 Aerodynamic Lift 12

1.3 The Actuator Disc 14

1.4 Open Flow Actuator Disc 15

1.4.1 Axial Induction 15

1.4.2 Momentum 16

1.5 Generalised Actuator Disc Theory 17

1.6 The Force on a Diffuser 23

1.7 Generalised Actuator Disc Theory and Realistic Diffuser Design 24

1.8 Why a Rotor? 24

1.9 Basic Operation of a Rotor 25

1.10 Blade Element Momentum Theory 27

1.10.1 Momentum Equations 27

1.10.2 Blade Element Equations 28

1.11 Optimum Rotor Theory 30

1.11.1 The Power Coefficient, Cp 33

1.11.2 Thrust Coefficient 36

1.11.3 Out-of-Plane Bending Moment Coefficient 36

1.12 Generalised BEM 38

1.13 Limitations of Actuator Disc and BEM Theory 41

1.13.1 Actuator Disc Limitations 41

1.13.2 Wake Rotation and Tip Effect 41

1.13.3 Optimum Rotor Theory 42

1.13.4 Skewed Flow 42

1.13.5 Summary 42

References 43

2 Rotor Aerodynamic Design 45

2.1 Optimum Rotors and Solidity 45

2.2 Rotor Solidity and Ideal Variable Speed Operation 46

2.3 Solidity and Loads 48

2.4 Aerofoil Design Development 48

2.5 Sensitivity of Aerodynamic Performance to Planform Shape 52

2.6 Aerofoil Design Specification 54

References 55

3 Rotor Structural Interactions 57

3.1 Blade Design in General 57

3.2 Basics of Blade Structure 58

3.3 Simplified Cap Spar Analyses 60

3.3.1 Design for Minimum Mass with Prescribed Deflection 61

3.3.2 Design for Fatigue Strength: No Deflection Limits 61

3.4 The Effective t/c Ratio of Aerofoil Sections 62

3.5 Blade Design Studies: Example of a Parametric Analysis 64

3.6 Industrial Blade Technology 69

3.6.1 Design 69

3.6.2 Manufacturing 69

3.6.3 Design Development 70

References 73

4 Upscaling of Wind Turbine Systems 75

4.1 Introduction: Size and Size Limits 75

4.2 The ‘Square-Cube’ Law 78

4.3 Scaling Fundamentals 78

4.4 Similarity Rules for Wind Turbine Systems 80

4.4.1 Tip Speed 80

4.4.2 Aerodynamic Moment Scaling 81

4.4.3 Bending Section Modulus Scaling 81

4.4.4 Tension Section Scaling 81

4.4.5 Aeroelastic Stability 81

4.4.6 Self Weight Loads Scaling 81

4.4.7 Blade (Tip) Deflection Scaling 82

4.4.8 More Subtle Scaling Effects and Implications 82

4.4.9 Gearbox Scaling 83

4.4.10 Support Structure Scaling 83

4.4.11 Power/Energy Scaling 83

4.4.12 Electrical Systems Scaling 84

4.4.13 Control Systems Scaling 84

4.4.14 Scaling Summary 84

4.5 Analysis of Commercial Data 85

4.5.1 Blade Mass Scaling 86

4.5.2 Shaft Mass Scaling 90

4.5.3 Scaling of Nacelle Mass and Tower Top Mass 90

4.5.4 Tower Top Mass 91

4.5.5 Tower Scaling 92

4.5.6 Gearbox Scaling 96

4.6 Upscaling of VAWTs 97

4.7 Rated Tip Speed 97

4.8 Upscaling of Loads 99

4.9 Violating Similarity 101

4.10 Cost Models 101

4.11 Scaling Conclusions 103

References 103

5 Wind Energy Conversion Concepts 105

References 107

6 Drive Train Design 109

6.1 Introduction 109

6.2 Definitions 109

6.3 Objectives of Drive Train Innovation 110

6.4 Drive Train Technology Maps 110

6.5 Direct Drive 114

6.6 Hybrid Systems 117

6.7 Hydraulic Transmission 118

6.8 Efficiency of Drive Train Components 120

6.8.1 Introduction 120

6.8.2 Efficiency Over the Operational Range 121

6.8.3 Gearbox Efficiency 122

6.8.4 Generator Efficiency 122

6.8.5 Converter Efficiency 123

6.8.6 Transformer Efficiency 124

6.8.7 Fluid Coupling Efficiency 124

6.9 The Optimum Drive Train 125

6.10 Innovative Concepts for Power Take-Off 126

References 129

7 Offshore Wind Turbines 131

7.1 Design for Offshore 131

7.2 High Speed Rotor 132

7.2.1 Design Logic 132

7.2.2 Speed Limit 132

7.2.3 Rotor Configurations 133

7.2.4 Design Comparisons 134

7.3 ‘Simpler’ Offshore Turbines 138

7.4 Offshore Floating Turbine Systems 139

References 141

8 Technology Trends Summary 143

8.1 Evolution 143

8.2 Consensus in Blade Number and Operational Concept 145

8.3 Divergence in Drive Train Concepts 145

8.4 Future Wind Technology 146

8.4.1 Introduction 146

8.4.2 Airborne Systems 146

8.4.3 New System Concepts 147

References 149

Part II TECHNOLOGY EVALUATION

9 Cost of Energy 153

9.1 The Approach to Cost of Energy 153

9.2 Energy: The Power Curve 156

9.3 Energy: Efficiency, Reliability, Availability 161

9.3.1 Efficiency 161

9.3.2 Reliability 161

9.3.3 Availability 162

9.4 Capital Costs 163

9.5 Operation and Maintenance 164

9.6 Overall Cost Split 164

9.7 Scaling Impact on Cost 166

9.8 Impact of Loads (Site Class) 167

References 170

10 Evaluation Methodology 173

10.1 Key Evaluation Issues 173

10.2 Fatal Flaw Analysis 174

10.3 Power Performance 174

10.3.1 The Betz Limit 175

10.3.2 The Pressure Difference across a Wind Turbine 176

10.3.3 Total Energy in the Flow 177

10.4 Drive Train Torque 178

10.5 Representative Baseline 178

10.6 Design Loads Comparison 179

10.7 Evaluation Example: Optimum Rated Power of a Wind Turbine 181

10.8 Evaluation Example: The Carter Wind Turbine and Structural Flexibility 183

10.9 Evaluation Example: Concept Design Optimisation Study 186

References 187

Part III DESIGN THEMES

11 Optimum Blade Number 191

11.1 Energy Capture Comparisons 191

11.2 Blade Design Issues 192

11.3 Operational and System Design Issues 194

11.4 Multi Bladed Rotors 199

References 199

12 Pitch versus Stall 201

12.1 Stall Regulation 201

12.2 Pitch Regulation 203

12.3 Fatigue Loading Issues 204

12.4 Power Quality and Network Demands 206

12.4.1 Grid Code Requirements and Implications

for Wind Turbine Design 206

References 208

13 HAWT or VAWT? 211

13.1 Introduction 211

13.2 VAWT Aerodynamics 211

13.3 Power Performance and Energy Capture 217

13.4 Drive Train Torque 218

13.5 Niche Applications for VAWTs 220

13.6 Status of VAWT Design 220

13.6.1 Problems 220

13.6.2 Solutions? 221

References 222

14 Free Yaw 223

14.1 Yaw System COE Value 223

14.2 Yaw Dynamics 223

14.3 Yaw Damping 225

14.4 Main Power Transmission 225

14.5 Operational Experience of Free Yaw Wind Turbines 226

14.6 Summary View 227

References 227

15 Multi Rotor Systems 229

15.1 Introduction 229

15.2 Standardisation Benefit and Concept Developments 229

15.3 Operational Systems 230

15.4 Scaling Economics 230

15.5 History Overview 232

15.6 Aerodynamic Performance of Multi Rotor Arrays 232

15.7 Recent Multi Rotor Concepts 232

15.8 Multi Rotor Conclusions 237

References 238

16 Design Themes Summary 239

Part IV INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY EXAMPLES

17 Adaptable Rotor Concepts 243

17.1 Rotor Operational Demands 243

17.2 Control of Wind Turbines 245

17.3 Adaptable Rotors 246

17.4 The Coning Rotor 248

17.4.1 Concept 248

17.4.2 Coning Rotor: Outline Evaluation – Energy Capture 250

17.4.3 Coning Rotor: Outline Evaluation – Loads 250

17.4.4 Concept Overview 251

17.5 Variable Diameter Rotor 252

References 253

18 A Shrouded Rotor 255

References 258

19 The Gamesa G10X Drive Train 259

20 Gyroscopic Torque Transmission 263

References 268

21 The Norsetek Rotor Design 269

References 271

22 Siemens Blade Technology 273

23 Stall Induced Vibrations 277

References 280

24 Magnetic Gearing and Pseudo-Direct Drive 283

24.1 Magnetic Gearing Technology 283

24.2 Pseudo-Direct Drive Technology 286

References 288

25 Summary and Concluding Comments 289

Index 291

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Peter Jamieson, Principal Engineer, Special Projects Department, Garrad Hassan & Partners Ltd., Edinburgh, Scotland
Peter Jamieson has been in the wind industry since 1980, and with Garrad Hassan since 1991 as a founding founder member of their Scottish office. He was previously with James Howden of Glasgow who manufactured wind turbines from 1980 – 1988.
He currently heads the "Special Projects" department in Garrad Hassan with involvement in innovative designs of wind turbine and component developments. He is also involved in technology review for government, wind industry and commercial organisations. He has authored circa 30 published papers on wind energy topics, as well as magazine articles, and authored much of the technological content for the EWEA (European Wind Energy Association) publication Wind Energy: The Facts. He holds a number of patents on wind turbine rotor technology.
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"I highly recommend the landmark and rigorous book Innovation in Wind Turbine Design by Peter Jamieson, to anyone in engineering, studying in engineering schools, wind turbine design, innovation and evaluation, business leadership, and policy making seeking a strong, engineering principles based book on design and innovation. This book, while containing some advanced mathematics, is also approachable as a guide to developing wind turbine innovations, and for evaluating the resulting designs from an economic and market perspective as well." (Blog Business World, 31 October 2011)
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