FairIP index           

High-Wind AWECS

AWECS that well fly in low and high winds, even severely high winds?
  • Arrays
  • Reefing
  • Morphing size, shape, angle of attack, volume, porosity, extension,
  • Remote elements
  • Jeroen Breukels on Inflatables (in PowerPoint file format, 7 MB)
  • Responsive robotics
  • Riot control
  • Notice paravanes
  • Bending
  • Wing warping
  • Aggregate stability
  • Arches
  • Experiments and experience needs for high-wind kiting
  • Semi-captivity
  • Responsive reeling
  • Kytoons: What are the potentials and challenges with various types of kytoons for high-wind AWECS operations?  Morphable kytoons?

    FairIP/CoopIP                           ~                          2010        M

Comment and development of this topic will be occurring here.        All, send notes!

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Commentary is welcome:

  • M1630
  • "The whole challenge in wind energy is protection from high winds, that's all it is really."
    ~Doug Selsam        USWINDLABS            Source: M1631
  • I disagree with Doug that high wind is the biggest AWE issue, low wind is at least as important & challenging; medium wind is really important too. Damaging high wind is evaded by simply landing.     ~DaveS
  • Actually, I think there is no reason why kites cannot fly at any speed -- depending on their designs.  ~Wayne German 
  • Dave,

    Actually, I think there is no reason why kites cannot fly at any speed -- depending on their designs.

    Standard ground based rigid wind turbines must furl or freeze to avoid being destroyed -- since the difference between the wind velocities in front of and behind the wind turbine would be too great and cause too much drag and pull the mast or tower down -- or because the rigid blades themselves would also encounter too much of a leveraging action by the drag they would encounter also.

    But kite based wind power generating systems need not experience any of those problems. First of all, if it were to encounter too much leveraging momentum due to high winds at a tether angle let's say of 80 degrees with respect to the horizontal, then the tether angle might decrease to something like 20 degrees say. So what? Being blown to a lower altitude temporarily is a whole lot different than being blown all the way to where you "bounce" spectacularly -- but never to rise again.

    Also most of all of the good designs we all now propose have the generator on the ground -- which results in unimaginably less mass flapping excitedly. And if we cannot expect to survive fast winds then what are our colleagues thinking about when they discuss tapping into the jetstream specifically to be able to access ultra fast winds.

    Lastly, our devices need not be totally and completely rigid -- in fact, some of them are derigible based, so it seems like it might be a far better strategy to design the kites like high tech high rises are now, to where they bend rather than break in very high winds.

    And speaking of bending, we might even want to have controlled wing warping like Orville and Wilbur had a century ago on their kites just so we could bend and contort controllably as desired in high winds. And also -- another step further -- some of the lighter-than-air designs could use similar techniques to dynamically modify their cross-sections to generate more or less lift or drag -- either one.

    The bottom line is that "we ain't no dumb ground based huge rigid wind turbines" that need to hide in a corner just when the wind is starting to get real good. In fact, since the power in the wind varies as the cube of the velocity, maybe we should design just for extracting power in hurricanes alone in some areas -- while this is obviously a joke -- our goal should be to generate the greatest amount of money every year -- not the most consistent electricity. Let the power grid do that. So really, maybe our entire strategy to generate the greatest amount of money rather than the most consistent electricity will set kite based wind power generation strategies at odds with ground based wind power generation strategies -- because we can survive and generate power when the getting is really good, and they can't.

    -- Wayne German    June 14, 2010

  • There are some old posts with important consideration of high wind AWECS issues. Note that kytoons (& LTA generally) & high winds are incompatible.    ~DaveS
  • "I forgot to mention the number one way to handle high winds with kites- suspend them semi-captive in large arrays & let them go nuts.... aggregate stability will keep the riot flying,"  ~DaveS   M1632