Every year wind turbines are getting larger and more numerous in Germany as the share of energy from renewables grows. To improve the design of these wind giants and optimise the amount of intermittent electricity that’s produced by wind farms, more advanced digital simulation tools are needed.
A new joint project led by Dr Laura Lukassen, wind physicist at the University of Oldenburg, aims to significantly improve computer modelling in the field using artificial intelligence (AI). The MOUSE (Multiscale and Multiphysical Models and Simulation for Wind Energy) four year project is being funded by The Federal Ministry for Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK) to the tune of EUR 2 million. The researchers must consider multiple physical parameters across various timescales and orders of magnitude to forecast and track wind flows, control turbine operations and more accurately predict yields.
The Fraunhofer Institute for Wind Energy Systems in Oldenburg will work alongside the university team to develop new control methods enabling turbines to adapt to changing flow conditions. The calculations are intended to simulate large weather systems as well as small-scale turbulences that last only minutes. For example, the software will take into account atmospheric air currents and their interaction with the ocean and be able to simulate the elastic deformation of the turbines.
Part of the funding will go towards expanding a high-performance computing cluster, for which Lukassen raised around EUR 1.5 million in 2021 with funding from the Lower Saxony Ministry of Science. “The numerical simulation calculations in the MOUSE project require enormous computing power,” she says in a .
Overall the project findings will provide plant operators with a digital overview of operations and electricity yields and accelerate innovation in turbine design.