Wind Turbine Design Codes: A Comparison of the Structural Response

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory is continuing a comparison of several computer codes used in the design and analysis of wind turbines. The second part of this comparison determined how well the programs predict the structural response of wind turbines. In this paper, we compare the structural response for four programs: ADAMS, BLADED,FAST_AD, and YawDyn. ADAMS is a commercial, multibody-dynamics code from Mechanical Dynamics, Inc. BLADED is a commercial, performance and structural-response code from Garrad Hassan and Partners Limited. FAST_AD is a structural-response code developed by Oregon State University and the University of Utah for the NWTC. YawDyn is a structural-response code developed by the University of Utah forthe NWTC. ADAMS, FAST_AD, and YawDyn use the University of Utah's AeroDyn subroutine package for calculating aerodynamic forces. Although errors were found in all the codes during this study, once they were fixed, the codes agreed surprisingly well for most of the cases and configurations we evaluated. One unresolved discrepancy between BLADED and the AeroDyn-based codes was when there was bladeand/or teeter motion in addition to a large yaw error.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages13
StatePublished - 2000
Event19th ASME Wind Energy Symposium - Reno, Nevada
Duration: 10 Jan 200013 Jan 2000


Conference19th ASME Wind Energy Symposium
CityReno, Nevada

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-500-27470


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