Weekly Seminar

Weekly Seminar

Annual Symposium

CEAFM Dual Degree Program


Special Seminar: Spring 2013

Speaker: Dr. Luciano Castillo (Texas Tech University)
Title: "The Role of Turbulence in the Energy Entrainment of Wind Farms"

Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Time: 12:30 p.m.
Location: Gilman Hall 132


In order to investigate the impact of the number of blades in a wind turbine rotor on the vertical transport of momentum and kinetic energy, wind tunnel experiments were performed on a scaled down wind turbine array with three turbines in the spanwise direction and four turbines in the streamwise direction. The streamwise spacing was six diameters while the spanwise spacing was three diameters. Two rotor configurations were used, with one utilizing two blades and the other utilizing three blades. In both configurations, the diameter was 12 cm and the blade geometry was constant.

A boundary layer flow was introduced at the inlet to the array. Using torque and frequency measurements, power coefficient curves were produced at each row through the array. Power coefficients were matched at each row through the array, allowing for differences in the flow due to the number of blades to be analyzed non-dimensionally. The impact of the number of blades in a rotor on the vertical transport of energy was quantified, highlighting their differences as well as their development through the array. Previous studies have indicated that, when power coefficients are matched, kinetic energy entrainment approaches the same value for both rotors in the fourth row. This suggests that two-bladed rotors can be utilized from the fourth row to the end of the array, leading to significant cost savings in the construction of the wind farm. Finally, a prototype of a wind farm will be shown as means for future collaborations between JHU and TTU. In general, this seminar will stress the importance of understanding turbulence in wind energy.



Luciano Castillo is the Don-Kay-Clay Cash Distinguished Engineering Chair in Wind Energy and the executive Director/President of the National Wind Resource Center (NWRC) at Texas Tech University. After spending 12 years at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute he joined the ME department at TTU in the summer of 2011. His research in turbulence using experimental techniques, direct numerical simulations and multi-scale asymptotic analysis has injected new ideas in turbulent boundary layers and our understanding of initial conditions on large scale turbulence, particularly on wind energy. Some of his awards include: the NASA Faculty Fellowship, the Martin Luther King Faculty Award, and the Robert T. Knapp Award on complex flows from the ASME among others. He has published over 100 articles including a seminal paper on turbulent boundary layers and scaling laws.

Upcoming Seminar

Speaker: Prof. Beverley McKeon (California Institute of Technology)
Title: "Systems analysis of wall turbulence: Characterizing natural and synthetic self-sustaining processes"

Date: Friday, February 24, 2016
Time: 11:00 a.m.
Location: Gilman Hall 132

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