Experts discuss significant breakthroughs and future strategies in wind turbine efficiency and design under real-world conditions

MADRID, Spain – June 6, 2024 – The AIRE project, an initiative dedicated to advancing wind energy technology through innovative research and strategic partnerships, convened its fourth General Assembly online on June 6th, 2024. The assembly showcased transformative advancements in wind energy technologies that enhance the sustainability and operational efficiency of wind farms across the continent.

This event united top experts from leading industry players and academic institutions, including CAPITAL, CENER, DTU, Engie, Inveniam Group, IWES, ORE Catapult, PLOCAN, SGRE, ULPGC, and VTT. These partners contribute a broad spectrum of expertise from blade installation and wind farm management to sophisticated atmospheric modelling and blade damage assessment.

The assembly began with an address by Beatriz Méndez of CENER, project leader, who reflected on the project’s rapid progress since the previous General Assembly in Roskilde. Following the opening remarks, the assembly explored significant advancements in data-driven modelling, tool development, and turbine technology.

Charlotte Bay Hassager from DTU detailed the efforts that are underway to leverage data from six active measurement campaigns. The campaigns are ongoing projects at different geographic locations collecting real-time atmospheric data to inform and improve our wind models. This initiative is pivotal for developing a robust knowledge hub that supports further research and practical applications in wind farm management.

The next session, led by Teijo Arponen of VTT, provided updates on substantial progress in all five AIRE models, which range from larger-scale atmospheric simulations to detailed 3D models focusing on specific phenomena. The models are crucial for accurate site assessments that will determine the best locations for turbines.

Ásta Hannesdóttir from DTU discussed progress on developing tools like the Erosion Risk Atlas and integrated wind farm control toolbox, a suite of digital tools and technologies designed to optimize turbine design and operations, including an ‘erosion safe mode’ to minimize wear and tear from harsh weather conditions. The team defined key layers for the erosion atlas, including annual precipitation accumulation, damage assessment, and erosion prediction. Preliminary results on optimal schemes were presented, and progress continues on developing open-source components for the toolbox.

Lastly, Beatriz Méndez from CENER outlined efforts to produce more efficient and more durable wind turbine blades. The recently initiated task of designing and characterizing optimized airfoils has established specifications and testing timelines. Progress has been made in developing a comprehensive test protocol, combining rain erosion testing with indoor and outdoor weathering for various leading-edge coatings.

The assembly concluded with an engaging session focusing on future strategies and collaborative efforts. This final hour was dedicated to a discussion among all partners, reflecting on the insights shared throughout the day and strategizing for the upcoming phases of the project.

In closing, Beatriz Méndez highlighted the abundance of innovative ideas and potential improvements identified during the assembly. “The wealth of insights generated today speaks volumes about the project’s momentum,” she noted. “While our current scope can’t accommodate all these possibilities, they certainly provide a compelling case for an AIRE sequel. But for now, we’ve got plenty to keep us busy.

For more information about AIRE, visit our Project page.

Laia Mencia
+34 930 181 691

Author: Laia Mencia & Lucia Salinas
Editor: Laia Mencia & Lucia Salinas
June, 2024