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Wind Energy Science The interactive open-access journal of the European Academy of Wind Energy
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https://doi.org/10.5194/wes-2020-28
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/wes-2020-28
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 11 Feb 2020

Submitted as: research article | 11 Feb 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal WES.

Full scale deformation measurements of a wind turbine rotor in comparison with aeroelastic simulations

Stephanie Lehnhoff1, Alejandro Gómez González2, and Jörg R. Seume1 Stephanie Lehnhoff et al.
  • 1ForWind, Institute of Turbomachinery and Fluid Dynamics – Leibniz Universität Hannover
  • 2Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy A/S

Abstract. The measurement of deformation and vibration of wind turbine rotor blades becomes highly important as the length of rotor blades increases with the growth in demand for wind power. The requirement for field validation of the aeroelastic behaviour of wind turbines increases with the scale of the deformation, in particular for modern blades with very high flexibility and coupling between different vibration modes. However, performing full-scale field measurements for rotor blade deformation is not trivial and requires high temporal and spatial resolution. A promising deformation measurement technique is based on an optical method called Digital Image Correlation (DIC). A system for the application of DIC for full field measurements of wind turbine rotors has been developed and validated in the past years by ForWind, Institute of Turbomachinery and Fluid Dynamics, Leibniz Universität Hannover. The whole rotor of the wind turbine is monitored with a stereo camera system from the ground during measurement. Recently, DIC measurements on a Siemens Gamesa SWT-4.0-130 test turbine were performed on the tip of all blades with synchronized measurement of the inflow conditions by a ground-based LiDAR. As the turbine was additionally equipped with strain gauges in the blade root of all blades, the DIC results can be directly compared to the actual prevailing loads. In the end, the measured deformations are compared to aeroelastic simulations.

The deformation measured with DIC on the rotor blade tips shows the same qualitative behaviour when compared to loads measured with strain gauges in the blade root. This confirms that the DIC measurements correlate with the prevailing loads in reality. The comparison with aeroelastic simulations shows that the amplitude and trend of the in-plane deformation is in very good agreement with the DIC measurements. The out-of-plane deformation shows slight differences, which could be caused by the difference between real wind conditions and the wind statistics on which the simulations are based. The combined rotor blade pitch and torsion angle measured with DIC is in good agreement with the actual pitch value of the turbine. A detailed comparison with aeroelastic simulations shows that the amplitude of torsion measured with DIC is higher which might be caused by an inaccuracy of the experimental setup. This will be focus of future work. All in all, DIC shows very good agreement with comparative measurements and simulations which shows that it is a suitable method for measurements of deformation and torsion of multi-megawatt wind turbine rotor blades.

Stephanie Lehnhoff et al.

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Stephanie Lehnhoff et al.

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Short summary
The application of an optical measurement method for the determination of rotor blade deformation and torsion based on Digital Image Correlation (DIC) is presented. Measurement results are validated by comparison with comparative measurement data. Finally, aeroelastic simulation results are compared to DIC results. It is shown that the measured deformation is in very good agreement with the simulations and therefore DIC has a great potential for the experimental validation of aeroelastic codes.
The application of an optical measurement method for the determination of rotor blade...
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