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Interpreting wind tower and turbine data

This project will investigate the relationship between real wind speed data (and potentially power data) collected at wind turbines, and the power estimates provided by models that use estimated wind resource, wake models and turbine power curves to predict power output. Different wake models will be investigated to see if some are more effective at predicting results than others. Any variance from real data in the predictions will be traced to the three factors modeled, to see if one plays a larger role than the others. Different time periods will be explored, to see if variances are more apparent in specific seasons. The work will be conducted in MATLAB. The participating student will learn: how to interpret wind tower and turbine data; what a wake is and how to model it; the concept of variance or uncertainty in models; the influence of parameterization on results.

Mentor: Erin McDonald, Assistant professor of Mechanical Engineering and Art and Design, Iowa State University