Fast optimisation of tidal stream turbine positions for power generation in small arrays with low blockage based on superposition of self-similar far-wake velocity deficit profiles

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Abstract

Far wake velocities of a single horizontal axis three-bladed turbine in shallow flow have been measured previously in the laboratory and shown to have self-similar velocity deficit profiles. Wake velocities of arrays of turbines with one, two and three transverse rows have also been measured and simply superimposing the velocity deficits for a single turbine is shown to give accurate prediction of combined wake width and velocity deficit, accounting for variable downstream blockage through volume flux conservation. Array efficiency is defined as the ratio of total power generated to what would be generated by the same turbines in isolation. From prescribed initial turbine positions, generally determined intuitively or by practical considerations, adjusting the turbine positions to increase the power from each turbine, using the chain rule, shows that relatively small movements of 3-4 rotor diameters may increase array efficiency to over 90%.

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Stansby, P., & Stallard, T. (2016). Fast optimisation of tidal stream turbine positions for power generation in small arrays with low blockage based on superposition of self-similar far-wake velocity deficit profiles. Renewable Energy, 92, 366–375. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.renene.2016.02.019

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