FWO-SBWe are pleased to announce that one doctoral fellowship has been granted by FWO-SB to Sara Porchetta, VKI PhD member in collaboration with KULeuven for her work on the effect of wind wave interaction on energy harvesting of offshore wind turbines.


Sara PorchettaA future without renewable energy sources had become unrealistic. One of the more promising renewable energy source is wind energy, especially offshore wind energy. However, little is known about the effect of wind, waves and their interaction on the performance of wind turbines. In this PhD a numerical CFD model will be developed that incorporates these effects and that forecasts the optimal location for offshore windfarms.

This will be accomplished by coupling a microscale model with a mescoscale model for waves and wind. To obtain an accurate microscale model enough validation data are needed. Thus an experimental campaign will be performed during which wind, waves and their influence on wind turbine performance will be measured. The microscale model will be based on the WiWITS model but will include several improvements. While the microscale model can model power generation of a specific wind turbine, it needs realistic boundary conditions which will be obtained by mesoscale models. These forecast the weather at a specific location and model larger scale weather phenomena compared to microscale models.

Furthermore, they will be validated using both weather balloon measurements, satellite measurements and measurements from the offshore FINO platform. Mesoscale models, however, cannot include small scale elements such as wind turbines. By coupling both models, advantages of both will be combined. Such an integrated model will help to obtain high fidelity wind and wave fields for both the long and short term. Which can help with wind farm allocation and operation.

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