Our CFD tech boosts wind turbine design

The results from our participation in an Innovate UK funded project to help develop wind power in the UK have been disseminated. The second Simulated Wake Effects Platform for Turbines (SWEPT2), led by DNV GL, is developing a CFD-based simulation capability, using our zCFD code and data from EPIC.

The SWEPT2 project addresses the energy trilemma of energy security, equity and environmental sustainability. The UK is thought to be one of the best places to harness wind power and therefore the results of improving the efficiency of wind farm design could have a big impact in terms of reducing costs and lowering carbon emissions.

The wind energy sector is now in a strong position to modernise its simulation capability in order to better predict wind array generating power and lifespan. To improve the way that wakes of wind turbines are modelled, this project is investigating the uses of Graphical Processing Unit (GPU) based fluid dynamics modelling.  

We have contributed our high technology solution to the suite of tools in the project. Our zCFD product is a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) solver, which allows for simulations to be run affordably at scale. It was perfect for this project with its fast turnaround, flexibility, and open source solution for commercial customisation. zCFD is free for academics to use, and there are a range of licensing solutions from on-demand to unlimited.

With a project value of £1.48 million, SWEPT2 began in 2015 and will be completed this year. Other SWEPT2 partners include SSE, ORE Catapult, STFC, CFMS, and the universities of Surrey, Strathclyde, Bristol and Imperial College.

A full report is available via CFMS and the SWEPT2 wind farm models, which are available for external use, can be downloaded via zCFD.  

For more information about how zCFD and EPIC could help your business, get in touch.