Wind farm density and harvested power in very large wind farms: A low-order model
AbstractIn this work we create new understanding of wind turbine wakes recovery process as a function of wind farm density using large-eddy simulations of an atmospheric boundary layer diurnal cycle. Simulations are forced with a constant geostrophic wind and a time varying surface temperature extracted from a selected period of the Cooperative Atmospheric Surface Exchange Study field experiment. Wind turbines are represented using the actuator disk model with rotation and yaw alignment. A control volume analysis around each turbine has been used to evaluate wind turbine wake recovery and corresponding harvested power. Results confirm the existence of two dominant recovery mechanisms, advection and flux of mean kinetic energy, which are modulated by the background thermal stratification. For the low-density arrangements advection dominates, while for the highly loaded wind farms the mean kinetic energy recovers through fluxes of mean kinetic energy. For those cases in between, a smooth balance of both mechanisms exists. From the results, a low-order model for the wind farms' harvested power as a function of thermal stratification and wind farm density has been developed, which has the potential to be used as an order-of-magnitude assessment tool.