Skip to Content
Find More Like This
Return to Search

Wake Control System Based on Wake Tracking

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Contact NREL About This Technology

Technology Marketing Summary

There is a growing interest in the design of wind plant control systems to coordinate the controls of individual turbines to achieve improvements in the overall wind plant performance, such as total power production. Currently, individual turbine controls are adjusted to improve the total output of the plant above what would be achieved if each turbine pursued its individual optimal output. In general, current methods look to improve performance by accounting for the way turbines interact in a plant through their wakes, which can negatively impact performance.

To date, methods and systems for improving plant performance are mostly based on simulations and assume known, steady-state conditions. However, one obstacle to the introduction of optimization methods to actual wind plants in the field has been the complexity of wind and turbine wake interactions dynamically occurring in the wind plant’s actual atmospheric environment. Wind and wake directions are continually changing, and turbine wakes meander as they propagate downstream. This introduces a problem for techniques that rely on constant, steady-state information about wind and wake locations. Additionally, to be practically useful, a wind turbine plant’s power optimization or control method should respond in a reasonable amount of time. Otherwise, adjustments to control parameters of the turbines such as tilt, pitch, and yaw will be unable to respond quickly enough to make a sustainable improvement to the wind turbine plant’s power production.

Therefore, the need exists for better wind plant control strategies, methods, and systems.

Description

Engineers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have invented a method that applies wake redirection for a wind turbine, either by yawing or tilting a turbine, while simultaneously applying independent blade pitch control (IPC) to reduce the loading impacts. The benefit of this technique is that wake redirection still occurs with IPC, for example to cause the wake to avoid a downstream turbine, but with lower resultant loads on the turbine due to the added yaw or tilt misalignment.

The method includes predicting a first wake trajectory resulting from a first turbine, where the first predicted wake trajectory is described by a first vector and a first probability and measuring a metric associated with a first actual wake resulting from a second turbine. Based on the measured metric, the method calculates a second predicted wake trajectory resulting from a third turbine, where the second predicted wake trajectory is described by a second vector and a second probability. Based on the second predicted wake trajectory, the method adjusts a wind turbine control variable for a third turbine, where the first turbine, the second turbine, and the third turbine may all be the same turbine, may all be distinctly different turbines, or a combination thereof.

Benefits
  • Increased power production of wind plant
  • Longer lifetime of turbines 
  • Lower resultant loads on the turbine
Applications and Industries
  • Wind Plants
  • Wind Plant Control Systems
  • Wind Turbines
Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Date
Application 20160215759
Application
20160215759
METHODS AND SYSTEMS FOR WIND PLANT POWER OPTIMIZATION
A system includes at least one processor and at least one module operable by the at least one processor to receive at least one sensor measurement. The at least one sensor measurement may include at least one of a wind speed measurement, or a wind direction measurement. The at least one module may be further operable to determine, using a stochastic filter, and based on the at least one sensor measurement, at least one predicted attribute of a wake generated by a wind turbine, the wind turbine being one of a plurality of wind turbines of a wind plant. The at least one module may be further operable to modify, based on the at least one predicted attribute of the wake, at least one wind turbine control variable for at least one wind turbine of the plurality of wind turbines and output the at least one wind turbine control variable
National Renewable Energy Laboratory 01/28/2016
Filed
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated
NREL ROI 14-82ProposedAvailable12/09/201512/09/2015

Contact NREL About This Technology

To: Erin Beaumont<erin.beaumont@nrel.gov>