Systems Engineering Applications to Wind Energy Research, Design, and Development (Poster)

Research output: NRELPoster


Over the last few decades, wind energy has evolved into a large international industry involving major players in the manufacturing, construction, and utility sectors. Coinciding with the industry's growth, significant innovation in the technology has resulted in larger turbines with lower associated costs of energy and more complex designs in all subsystems. However, as the deployment of thetechnology grows, and its role within the electricity sector becomes more prominent, so has the expectations of the technology in terms of performance, reliability, and cost. The industry currently partitions its efforts into separate paths for turbine design, plant design and development, grid interaction and operation, and mitigation of adverse community and environmental impacts. Theseactivities must be integrated to meet a diverse set of goals while recognizing trade-offs between them. To address these challenges, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has embarked on the Wind Energy Systems Engineering (WESE) initiative to use methods of systems engineering in the research, design, and development of wind energy systems. Systems engineering is a field that has along history of application to complex technical systems. The work completed to date represents a first step in understanding this potential. It reviews systems engineering methods as applied to related technical systems and illustrates how these methods can be combined in a WESE framework to meet the research, design, and development needs for the future of the industry.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2012

Publication series

NamePresented at the WINDPOWER 2012 Conference & Exhibition, 3-6 June 2012, Atlanta, Georgia

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PO-5000-54717


  • systems engineering
  • systems engineering applications
  • wind
  • wind turbines


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