Low frequency noise from wind turbines mechanisms of generation and its modelling

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    The objective of the present paper is to present an overview of LFN characteristics of modern MW turbines based on numerical simulations. Typical sizes of modern turbines are from 1-3 MW nominal generator power and a rotor diameter ranging from 80-100 m but larger prototypes up to 5 MW and with a rotor diameter of 126 m have now been installed. The numerical investigations comprise the common upwind rotor concept but also the turbines with a downwind rotor are considered. The reason to include the downwind rotor concept is that this turbine design has some advantages which could lead to future competitive designs compared with the upwind threebladed rotor. The simulation package comprises an aeroelastic time simulation code HAWC2 and an acoustic low frequency noise (LFN) prediction model. Computed time traces of rotor thrust and rotor torque from the aeroelastic model are input to the acoustic model which computes the sound pressure level (SPL) at a specified distance from the turbine. The influences on LFN on a number of turbine design parameters are investigated and the position of the rotor relative to the tower (upwind or downwind rotor) is found to be the most important design parameter. For an upwind rotor the LFN levels are so low that it should not cause annoyance of neighbouring people. Important turbine design parameters with strong influence on LFN are the blade tip speed and the distance between rotor and tower.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Low Frequency Noise, Vibration and Active Control
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)239-251
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


    • Aeroelastic design methods


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