Boundary Layer, Urban Meteorology and Land-Surface Processes

Optimizing Lidar Scanning Strategies for Turbulence Measurements

Jennifer Newman
OU School of Meteorology

17 January 2014, 2:00 PM

National Weather Center, Room 5600
120 David L. Boren Blvd.
University of Oklahoma
Norman, OK

The actual power produced by a wind turbine is affected by the wind speeds and turbulence levels experienced across the entire turbine rotor disk. Because of the range of measurement heights required for wind power estimation, remote sensing devices (e.g., lidar) are ideally suited for these purposes. However, the volume averaging inherent in remote sensing technology produces turbulence estimates that are different from those estimated by a sonic anemometer mounted on a standard meteorological tower. In addition, most lidars intended for wind energy purposes utilize a standard Doppler beam-swinging or Velocity-Azimuth Display technique to estimate the three-dimensional wind vector. These scanning strategies are ideal for measuring mean wind speeds but are likely inadequate for measuring turbulence.

In order to examine the impact of different lidar scanning strategies on turbulence measurements, a WindCube lidar and two scanning Halo lidars were deployed at the Southern Great Plains Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) site in Summer 2013. Existing instrumentation at the ARM site, including a 60-m meteorological tower and an additional scanning Halo lidar, were used in conjunction with the deployed lidars to evaluate several user-defined scanning strategies. For part of the experiment, all three scanning lidars were pointed at approximately the same point in space and a tri-Doppler analysis was completed to calculate the three-dimensional wind vector every 1 second. In another part of the experiment, one of the scanning lidars ran a Doppler beam-swinging technique identical to that used by the WindCube lidar while another scanning lidar used a novel six-beam technique that has been presented in the literature as a better alternative for measuring turbulence. In this presentation, turbulence measurements from these techniques are compared to turbulence measured by the WindCube lidar and sonic anemometers on the 60-m meteorological tower. In addition, recommendations are made for lidar measurement campaigns for wind energy applications.

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