Prospects for generating electricity by large onshore and offshore wind farms

The decarbonisation of energy sources requires additional investments in renewable technologies, including the installation of onshore and offshore wind farms. For wind energy to remain competitive, wind farms must continue to provide low-cost power even when covering larger areas. Inside very large wind farms, winds can decrease considerably from their free-stream values to a point where an equilibrium wind speed is reached. The magnitude of this equilibrium wind speed is primarily dependent on the balance between turbine drag force and the downward momentum influx from above the wind farm. We have simulated for neutral atmospheric conditions, the wind speed field inside different wind farms that range from small (25 km2) to very large (105 km2) in three regions with distinct wind speed and roughness conditions.

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