02 Nov 2023
 | 02 Nov 2023
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal WES.

Aerodynamic effects of leading edge erosion in wind farm flow modeling

Jens Visbech, Tuhfe Göçmen, Özge Sinem Özçakmak, Alexander Meyer Forsting, Ásta Hannesdóttir, and Pierre-Elouan Réthoré

Abstract. Leading edge erosion (LEE) can significantly impact the aerodynamic performance of wind turbines and thereby the overall efficiency of a wind farm. Typically, erosion is modeled for individual turbines where aerodynamic effects are only impacting the energy production through degraded power curves. For wind farms, the aerodynamic deficiency has the potential to also alter the wake dynamics, which will affect the overall energy production. The objective of this study is to demonstrate this combined effect by coupling LEE damage prediction and aerodynamic loss modeling with steady-state wind farm flow modeling. The modeling workflow is used to simulate the effect of LEE on the Horns Rev I wind farm. Based on a 10-year simulation, the aerodynamic effect of LEE was found to be insignificant for the first few years of operation, but rapidly increases and reaches a maximum AEP loss of 2.9 % in the last year for a single turbine. When including the impact of LEE to the wakes behind eroded turbines, the AEP loss is seen to reduce to 2.7 % at the wind farm level.

Jens Visbech et al.

Status: open (until 19 Dec 2023)

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Jens Visbech et al.

Jens Visbech et al.


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Short summary
Leading edge erosion (LEE) can impact wind turbine aerodynamics and wind farm efficiency. This study couples LEE prediction, aerodynamic loss modeling, and wind farm flow modeling to show that LEE's effects on wake dynamics can affect overall energy production. Without preventive initiatives, the effects of LEE increase over time, resulting in significant annual energy production (AEP) loss.