Assessment of flow characteristics over complex terrain covered by the heterogeneous forest at slightly varying mean flow directions: (A case study of a Swedish wind farm)
Journal article, 2023

The impact of heterogeneous forest canopies and complex terrain on the horizontal distortion of the inflow is studied. Large-Eddy Simulation (LES) of the neutral Atmospheric Boundary Layer (ABL) flow is performed for a wind farm in Sweden for three cases associated with three different wind directions at the range of the static yaw misalignment (≃±6∘) where the yaw control system is not activated. The ground topography and forest properties for the numerical modeling are extracted from the Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS) 3D data. The wind turbines within the wind farm are introduced using the actuator disk model. To focus on the airflow deflection only by the complex terrain and vegetation, the study is limited to upstream wind turbines without any wake interaction. The predicted mean wind speed and turbulence intensity for the upstream wind turbines are compared against the nacelle-mounted anemometers taken from the wind farm's turbine SCADA data. To quantify the additional load and moments induced at the rotor blades by the horizontal misalignment of the incoming flow, aero-structural simulation of the upstream wind turbines in the wind farm for all three cases is performed. The results show that the horizontal distortion of the inflow over the rotor swept area is usually kept below the range of static yaw misalignment (≃6∘) for the majority of the upstream wind turbines for all three cases. However, the impact of a large vertical shear exponent leading to misinterpretation of the results must be taken into consideration. Furthermore, the load imbalance of the rotor due to the vertical wind shear has the least direct contribution to the yaw moment. However, for a mean vertical shear exponent larger than α=0.25, contrary to expectation, a positive mean yaw moment under the positive-yawed inflow may be observed.

Static yaw misalignment

Large-Eddy simulation

Heterogeneous forest

Complex terrain

Atmospheric boundary layer flow


Hamidreza Abedi

Swedish Wind Power Technology Center (SWPTC)

Chalmers, Mechanics and Maritime Sciences (M2), Fluid Dynamics

Renewable Energy

0960-1481 (ISSN)

Vol. 202 537-553

Subject Categories

Aerospace Engineering

Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences

Fluid Mechanics and Acoustics



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