Wind Turbines Under Atmospheric Icing Conditions - Ice Accretion Modeling, Aerodynamics, and Control Strategies for Mitigating Performance Degradation

Open Access
Brillembourg, Dwight David
Graduate Program:
Aerospace Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
January 12, 2012
Committee Members:
  • Sven Schmitz, Thesis Advisor
  • Dennis K Mc Laughlin, Thesis Advisor
  • George A Lesieutre, Thesis Advisor
  • wind turbine
  • icing
This thesis presents a combined engineering methodology of ice accretion, airfoil data, and rotor performance analysis of wind turbines subject to moderate atmospheric icing conditions. The Turbine Icing Operation Control System (TIOCS) is based on strip theory for both ice accretion and aerodynamic modeling. The tool is valid for small amounts of accreted ice in the order of a few percent of the sectional airfoil chord. The TIOCS methodology is a fast engineering analysis tool for the wind industry and wind turbine operators that allows for nding guidelines for wind turbine operation during and post moderate icing events. In this thesis, the icing event was relatively short (less than an hour) and three control strategies were explored to determine wind turbine performance degradation. Preliminary results obtained for the NREL Phase VI rotor, the NREL 5MW rotor, and the in-house designed PSU-2.5 MW wind turbines subject to a representative icing condition indicate that performance degradation with respect to power loss can be mitigated with appropriate control strategies during and post an icing event.