Investigation of potential extreme load reduction for a two-bladed upwind turbine with partial pitch



This paper presents a wind turbine concept with an innovative design combining partial pitch with a two-bladed (PP-2B) turbine configuration. Special emphasis is on extreme load reduction during storm situations at standstill, but operational loads are also investigated. In order to compare the loads and dynamics of the PP-2B turbine, a partial pitch three-bladed (PP-3B) turbine and a normal pitch regulated three-bladed (3B) turbine are introduced on the basis of solidity similarity scaling. From the dynamic comparisons between two- and three-bladed turbines, it has been observed that the blade vibrations are transferred differently from the rotor to the tower. For a three-bladed turbine, blade vibrations seen in a fixed frame of reference are split with ±1P only. A two-bladed turbine has a similar split of ±1P but also includes contributions on higher harmonics (±2P, ±3P, … etc.). Further on, frequency split is also seen for the tower vibrations, where an additional ±2P contribution has been observed for the two-bladed turbine. Regarding load comparisons, the PP-2B turbine produces larger tower load variations because of 2P excitation during the operational cases. However, extreme loads are reduced by approximately 20% for the PP-2B and 18% for the PP-3B compared with the 3B turbine for the parked condition in a storm situation. Moreover, a huge potential of 60% is observed for the reduction of the extreme tower bottom bending moment for the PP-2B turbine, when the wind direction is from ±90° to the turbine, but this also requires that the turbine is parked in a T-configuration. © 2014 The Authors. Wind Energy published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.