0
Research Papers

A Design Framework for Optimizing the Mechanical Performance, Cost, and Environmental Impact of a Wind Turbine Tower

[+] Author and Article Information
Daniel Stratton

Department of Mechanical
and Aerospace Engineering,
University at Buffalo,
State University of New York,
Buffalo, NY 14260
e-mail: dstrat9@gmail.com

Daniel Martino

Department of Mechanical
and Aerospace Engineering,
University at Buffalo,
State University of New York,
Buffalo, NY 14260
e-mail: dmartino@buffalo.edu

Felipe M. Pasquali

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace
Engineering,
University at Buffalo,
State University of New York,
Buffalo, NY 14260
e-mail: felipeme@buffalo.edu

Kemper Lewis

Department of Mechanical
and Aerospace Engineering,
University at Buffalo,
State University of New York,
Buffalo, NY 14260
e-mail: kelewis@buffalo.edu

John F. Hall

Department of Mechanical
and Aerospace Engineering,
University at Buffalo,
State University of New York,
Buffalo, NY 14260
e-mail: johnhall@buffalo.edu

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING: INCLUDING WIND ENERGY AND BUILDING ENERGY CONSERVATION. Manuscript received June 10, 2015; final manuscript received April 22, 2016; published online May 12, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Yves Gagnon.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 138(4), 041008 (May 12, 2016) (9 pages) Paper No: SOL-15-1176; doi: 10.1115/1.4033500 History: Received June 10, 2015; Revised April 22, 2016

The tower represents a significant portion of the materials and cost of the small wind turbine system. Optimization techniques typically maximize the tower loading capability while reducing material use and cost. Still, tower design focuses mainly on structural integrity and durability. Moreover, tower motion that intensifies drivetrain and structural loads is only rarely considered. The environmental impact of the wind turbine must also be considered since wind energy promotes sustainability. Trade-offs between the structural performance, cost, and environmental impact are examined to guide the designer toward a sustainable alternative. Ultimately, an optimal design technique can be implemented and used to automate tower design. In this study, nine tower designs with different materials and geometries are analyzed using finite element analysis (FEA). The optimal tower design is selected using a multilevel-decision-making procedure. The analysis suggests that steel towers of minimal wall thickness are preferred. This study is a continuation of the previous work that optimized energy production and component life of small wind systems (Hall et al., 2015, “An Integrated Control and Design Framework for Optimizing Energy Capture and Component Life for a Wind Turbine Variable Ratio Gearbox,” ASME J. Sol. Energy Eng., 137(2), p. 021022). The long-term goal is to develop a tool that performs optimization and automated design of small wind systems. In our future work, the tower and drivetrain designs will be merged and studied using higher fidelity models.

FIGURES IN THIS ARTICLE
<>
Copyright © 2016 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.

References

Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Cross sections showing the variables for the top and bottom of the tower geometry

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Spatially varying wind load

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Loading and boundary conditions

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Maximum von-Mises stress of the structural steel tower

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Total deformation plot of the structural steel tower

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Hierarchy of attributes

Tables

Errata

Discussions

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In