Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/wes-2021-83
https://doi.org/10.5194/wes-2021-83

  23 Aug 2021

23 Aug 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal WES.

Wake properties and power output of very large wind farms for different meteorological conditions and turbine spacings: A large-eddy simulation case study for the German Bight

Oliver Maas and Siegfried Raasch Oliver Maas and Siegfried Raasch
  • Institute of Meteorology and Climatology, Leibniz University Hannover, Hannover, Germany

Abstract. Germany’s expansion target for offshore wind power capacity of 40 GW by the year 2040 can only be reached if large portions of the Exclusive Economic Zone in the German Bight are equipped with wind farms. Because these wind farm clusters will be much larger than existing wind farms, it is unknown how they affect the boundary layer flow and how much power they will produce. The objective of this large-eddy-simulation study is to investigate the wake properties and the power output of very large potential wind farms in the German Bight for different turbine spacings, stabilities and boundary layer heights. The results show that very large wind farms cause flow effects that small wind farms do not. These effects include, but are not limited to, inversion layer displacement, counterclockwise flow deflection inside the boundary layer and clockwise flow deflection above the boundary layer. Wakes of very large wind farms are longer for shallower boundary layers and smaller turbine spacings, reaching values of more than 100 km. The wake in terms of turbulence intensity is approximately 20 km long, where longer wakes occur for convective boundary layers and shorter wakes for stable boundary layers. Very large wind farms in a shallow, stable boundary layer can excite gravity waves in the overlying free atmosphere, resulting in significant flow blockage. The power output of very large wind farms is higher for thicker boundary layers, because thick boundary layers contain more kinetic energy than thin boundary layers. The power density of the energy input by the geostrophic pressure gradient limits the power output of very large wind farms. Because this power density is very low (approximately 2 W m−2), the installed power density of very large wind farms should be small to achieve a good wind farm efficiency.

Oliver Maas and Siegfried Raasch

Status: open (until 08 Oct 2021)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse

Oliver Maas and Siegfried Raasch

Data sets

Dataset: Wake properties and power output of very large wind farms in the German Oliver Maas, Siegfried Raasch https://doi.org/10.25835/0004522

Oliver Maas and Siegfried Raasch

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Short summary
In the future there will be very large wind farm clusters in the German Bight. This study investigates how the wind field is affected by this very large wind farms and how much energy can be extracted by the wind turbines. Very large wind farms do not only reduce the wind speed but can also cause a change in wind direction or temperature. The extractable energy per wind turbine is much smaller for large wind farms than for small wind farms due to the reduced wind speed inside the wind farms.