Unsteady Aerodynamics Experiment Phases II-IV: Test Configurations and Available Data Campaigns

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


The main objective of the Unsteady Aerodynamics Experiment is to provide information needed to quantify the full-scale three-dimensional behavior of horizontal axis wind turbines. To accomplish this, an experimental wind turbine configured to meet specific research objectives was assembled and operated at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The turbine was instrumented tocharacterize rotating blade aerodynamic performance, machine structural responses, and atmospheric inflow conditions. Comprehensive tests were conducted with the turbine operating in an outdoor field environment under diverse conditions. Resulting data are used to validate aerodynamic and structural dynamics models which are an important part of wind turbine design and engineering codes.Improvements in these models are needed to better characterize aerodynamic response in both the steady-state post-stall and dynamic stall regimes. Much of the effort in the earlier phase of the Unsteady Aerodynamics Experiment focused on developing required data acquisition systems. Complex instrumentation and equipment was needed to meet stringent data requirements while operating under theharsh environmental conditions of a wind turbine rotor. Once the data systems were developed, subsequent phases of experiments were then conducted to collect data for use in answering specific research quesitons. A description of the experiment configuration used during Phases II-IV of the experiment is contained in this report.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages178
StatePublished - 1999

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-500-25950


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