Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Wind Turbine Aerodynamics: Stall vs Pitch Regulation

What is a stall regulated wind turbine? What is pitch control in a wind turbine? What are the flappy bits you sometimes see at the blade tips on old wind turbines?

In this video I answer these questions and talk about the two ways to regulate the amount of power produced by wind turbine blades so that the generator doesn’t get overloaded when wind speeds are high. I explain how each one works, including some of the applied physics and the engineering design process you need to be able to understand the design tradeoffs involved:

00:24 Why does wind turbine power need to be regulated?
00:29 How does a wind turbine work?
01:14 How does stall regulation work?
01:21 What is aerodynamic stall?
01:40 Angle of attack
02:13 Lift force and stall angle visualisation (turbulent separated flow)
03:35 Wind turbine blade velocity triangle (vector addition)
04:20 Benefits of stall regulated wind turbine blades
04:59 How does pitch regulation work?
05:17 Benefits of pitch regulation
05:29 Pitch bearing design and challenges
06:10 Pitching blades to startup in low wind speeds and to use as a brake

Check out my other wind turbine engineering videos:
Wind Turbine Design playlist:

How Does a Wind Turbine Work? playlist:

Wind Turbine End of Life Issues playlist:

The fluid flow simulations in this video are screenshots from the Windtunnel app. This is a really fun app to play with to run your own wind tunnel experiments and learn about aerodynamics!

For wind energy theory I recommend Burton’s “Wind Energy Handbook.”
Available to buy from Amazon (affiliate link), or your university library probably has it!

Engineering with Rosie animated intro is by www.video-gestaltung.de


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