Urban Wind Energy

Christina Beller

Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

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New trends e.g. in architecture and urban planning are to reduce
energy needs. Several technologies are employed to achieve this,
and one of the technologies, not new as such, is wind energy. Wind
turbines are installed in cities, both by companies and private
persons on both old and new buildings. However, an overview of
the energy content of the wind in cities and how consequently
turbines shall be designed for such wind climates is lacking. The
objective of the present work is to deliver an objective and
fundamental overview of the social, practical and physical
conditions relevant for the installation of wind turbines in cities,
with Copenhagen, DK, as example. Focus is taken on turbine with a
swept area of maximum 5m2, since turbines of this size are
relatively easy to be integrated in the urban space and are in the
financial range for small companies as well as for private persons.
Elements important for the implementation of wind energy
conversion systems are the macro and micro wind climate, the
siting within a micro wind climate and the choice of a wind turbine
model most appropriate for the selected site. In the frame of this
work, all these important elements are analyzed and a row of
conclusions are found. Not as a surprise, it can be concluded, that
the average wind velocities and with that the wind energy available
in a city is somewhat lower than at a rural site outside the city.
Furthermore, the wind climate in cities is very dependent on the
buildings character and higher turbulences are expected. Therefore,
methods are developed in this work to estimate the wind energy in
cities depending on the built-up character, with both, simple and
advanced calculation models. The energy produced by a wind turbine is also dependent on the turbine design, but especially on
the rotor design. An analysis of which rotor type is most effective is
carried out. A result of this analysis is, that turbines for the
installation in cities need to be designed very differently than e.g.
turbines for off-shore sites and that an optimization of the design
can increase the energy production remarkably. Despite the lower
wind energy in cities other factors foster the attractiveness of urban
wind energy application, like the demand or wish to reduce CO2
emissions and the possibility to produce energy directly to ones
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationRoskilde
PublisherDanmarks Tekniske Universitet, Risø Nationallaboratoriet for Bæredygtig Energi
Number of pages168
ISBN (Electronic)978-87-550-3953-7
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


  • Risø-PhD-89(EN)
  • Risø-PhD-89


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