Material fatigue in wind turbines

Reducing the aerodynamic load on wind turbines.

A lack of wind turbine sites on land means that wind turbine technology is moving offshore. But costs are higher for materials and maintenance for offshore turbines, which has researchers working to make the technology cheaper and more reliable.

One issue is that the wake behind the tower puts an extra strain on turbine blades and also has implications for turbine’s efficiency. This phenomenon is called tower shadow. A doctoral
thesis at NTNU’s Department of Civil and Transport has examined how the aerodynamic load on ocean wind turbine blades can be reduced, thus also reducing material fatigue.