Vertical Axis Wind Turbines Tower Dynamics and Noise

University dissertation from Uppsala : Uppsala universitet

Abstract: Vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs) have with time been outrivaled by the today common and economically feasible horizontal axis wind turbines (HAWTs). However, VAWTs have several advantages such as the possibility to put the drive train at ground level, lower noise emissions and better scaling behavior which still make them interesting for research.The work within this thesis is made in collaboration between the Department of Construction and Energy Engineering at Halmstad University and the Division for Electricity at Uppsala University. A 200 kW VAWT owned by the latter and situated close to Falkenberg in the southwest of Sweden has been the main subject of the research even if most learnings has been generalized to fit a typical vertical turbine. This particular turbine has a wooden tower which is semi-guy-wired, i.e. the tower is both firmly attached to the ground and supported by guy-wires.This thesis has two main topics both regarding VAWTs: eigenfrequency of the tower and the noise generated from the turbine. The eigenfrequency of a semi-guy-wired tower is studied and an analytical expression describing this is produced and verified by experiments and simulations. The eigenfrequency of the wire itself and how it is affected by wind load are also studied.  The noise characteristics of VAWTs have been investigated, both theoretically and by noise measurement campaigns. Both noise emission and frequency distribution of VAWTs has been studied.The work has resulted in analytical expressions for tower and wire eigenfrequency of a semi-guy-wired tower as well as recommendations for designing future towers for VAWTs. The noise emission of VAWTs has been studied and proven low compared to HAWTs. The noise frequency distribution of the 200 kW VAWT differs significantly from that of a similar size HAWTs with for example lower levels for frequencies below 3000 Hz.