Turbulence coherence and its impact on wind-farm power fluctuations

Nicolas Tobin, Leonardo P. Chamorro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Using a physics-based approach, we infer the impact of the coherence of atmospheric turbulence on the power fluctuations of wind farms. Application of the random-sweeping hypothesis reveals correlations characterized by advection and turbulent diffusion of coherent motions. Those contribute to local peaks and troughs in the power spectrum of the combined units at frequencies corresponding to the advection time between turbines, which diminish in magnitude at high frequencies. Experimental inspection supports the results from the random-sweeping hypothesis in predicting spectral characteristics, although the magnitude of the coherence spectrum appears to be over-predicted. This deviation is attributed to the presence of turbine wakes, and appears to be a function of the turbulence approaching the first turbine in a pair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1116-1129
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
StatePublished - Nov 25 2018


  • turbulent boundary layers
  • turbulent flows

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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