Project Overview

UniTTe addresses the question of how best to characterise the wind when measuring the power and loads on modern wind turbines.

Current international standards require us to measure the wind from a mast, far in-front of the rotor and at the rotor centre height (hub-height). UniTTe proposes a radical change so that in the future we will measure with a lidar (laser anemometer) mounted on the nacelle, measure quite close to the rotor and measure over a range of heights. The advantages will be significant: avoiding erecting high masts (hugely expensive offshore), getting better correlation between the wind and the power and loads and achieving universal procedures that work equally well both offshore and in mountains.

Measuring the wind close to the rotor will require us to understand and correct for the way in which the wind turbine modifies the flow and this is perhaps our biggest challenge. Meeting this challenge will provide us with a deeper understanding of wind turbine aerodynamics that can have benefits in other areas such as wakes and control.

UniTTe will deliver new measurement procedures – describing how modern nacelle-mounted lidars should be calibrated and how to use them for load and power measurements. These new procedures will be scrutinised by a range of participating organisations – developers, manufacturers and standards bodies. Ultimately we anticipate that UniTTe will deliver the scientific basis for the next generation of international power and load standards.
23 JANUARY 2018