High-fidelity analysis of wind plant and wind turbine fluid physics and structural response using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and FAST

by Matt Churchfield and Sang Lee

SOWFA (Simulator fOr Wind Farm Applications) is a set of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) solvers, boundary conditions, and turbine models based on the OpenFOAM CFD toolbox. It includes a version of the turbine model coupled with FAST. This tool allows users to investigate wind wind turbine and wind plant performance under the full range of atmospheric conditions and in terrain.

The package includes:

  • Atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) solver
  • Wind plant solver
  • Actuator line turbine model class (standard and coupled with FAST)
  • Atmospheric/wind plant specific boundary condition classes
  • Utilities for flow field initialization
  • Utility to convert precurson sampled boundary data to inflow data for wind plant solver

Sample Cases:

  • Precursor simulation of atmospheric boundary layer
  • Wind farm simulation of 48 NREL 5MW turbines using standard actuator line
  • Four NREL 5MW reference wind turbine using FAST actuator line
  • ABL simulation with 2 NREL 5MW turbines using FAST actuator line (beta version)

Online Tutorials:

Files for Download:

  • For recent developments in SOWFA, please login and use the links for the GitHub repository below. Currently, SOWFA is supported only for Linux operating systems.
Programming Language:     Technology:     Wind and Water Tools:

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If you want to refer to this website in a report, here is a reference you can use:
NWTC Information Portal (SOWFA). Last modified 31-March-2015 ; Accessed 05-April-2020