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High Fidelity Design and Simulation
for Wind Power Applications


  • Aerodynamics: Steady, Transient, Moving Rotors
  • Aeroelasticity: Fluid Structure Interaction
  • Siting: Macro, Micro, Wake Predictions
  • Noise Prediction: High Res Transient Simulations
  • Offshore Platform: VIV, VIM and Wave/Platform Interactions
  • Structural Analysis: Large Deformation Analysis, Fatigue Predictions
  • Multi-body Dynamics: Wind Turbine System Level Interactions
  • Composite Blade Optimization: Composite, Size, Shape and Weight
  • Advanced Material Extrusion and Manufacturability


The wealth of insight provided by Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations give wind turbine designers and engineers the opportunity to rapidly investigate advanced design concepts and improve efficiency, reliability, and cost effectiveness that are required to propel wind power technology into the future.

Join Altair Engineering at WINDPOWER 2011, the world’s largest and most anticipated annual event for wind energy. Visit us at Booth #1982, May 22 – 25, at the Anaheim Convention Center.

Daily Booth Presentations

Daily in-booth (#1982) presentations from leading CAE, CFD and wind industry experts.

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Win an iPod NanoAn iPod Nano will be raffled away at the end of each day. Attend a presentation to win!


Advanced CFD Simulations for Wind Power Applications
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Combined Fluid and Structural Analysis of Wind Turbines
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

The Importance and Impact of Multi-body Dynamics Simulation in the Wind Energy Market
Jon S Quigley, Director of System Modeling, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Validation of External Aerodynamic Simulations for Wind
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Optimization of a Wind Turbine Composite Blade
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Automated CFD Simulation Processes for Wind Turbine Aerodynamics
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Structural Analysis of Towers and Blades for Wind Power Generation
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Technical Poster Receptions

Afternoon Technical Poster Receptions with technical author and senior CFD analyst to learn firsthand results and a methodology using commercial CFD to study utility scale wind turbine aerodynamics employing advanced, high fidelity modeling techniques.

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Validation of High Fidelity CFD Modeling Approach for Utility Scale Wind Turbines
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.
Monday, May 23, 2011 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Tuesday, May 24, 2011 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Location: Hall C, Altair Booth #1982

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Schedule Now for private meetings with Altair Engineering. We would like to help you with your Wind Power Design Analysis and Simulation projects and software needs. Contact shing@altair.com for customer meetings!

Presentation Abstracts

Advanced CFD Simulations for Wind Power Applications
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

The power of computational fluid dynamics extends far beyond steady state aerodynamics predictions of rotor performance. In this presentation, we explore some of the advanced applications of CFD in the wind power field. The presentation will touch upon turbine siting applications, offshore applications involving platform VIV/VIM, and other forms of multiphysics simulations.

Combined Fluid and Structural Analysis of Wind Turbines
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

The deflection and loading of wind turbines can only be determined by simultaneously analyzing the structure of the blades and the air flow around them. Altair RADIOSS/AcuSolve Fluid Structure Interaction (FSI) simulation is required to analyze the structural response of the blades while at the same time determining the air flow around them. As the blades deflect, the air flow is changed, and the air flow pattern determines the structural loads causing the blades to deflect. Using RADIOSS/AcuSolve Fluid Structure Interaction, the fatigue life of the turbine can be determined. At the same time, the noise level and content generated by the turbine moving through the air can be calculated. In this presentation, you will experience a showcase of how RADIOSS/AcuSolve technology can be leveraged to help resolve challenges faced in the Wind Industry.

The Importance and Impact of Multi-body Dynamics Simulation in the Wind Energy Market
Jon S Quigley, Director of System Modeling, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Multi-body Dynamics (MBD) simulation technology helps quickly increase the understanding of the dynamics of mechanisms as a whole. At its forefront, Altair’s MBD products are capable of meeting simulation requirements in various Wind Energy applications. In this presentation, you will experience a showcase of how MBD technology can be leveraged to help resolve challenges faced in the Wind Industry today.

Validation of External Aerodynamic Simulations for Wind
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Detailed validation of a CFD methodology is necessary to evaluate the level of accuracy of the simulations for a given application. Often times, it is difficult to obtain detailed test data for complex models such as wind turbine rotors. Under these circumstances, we often look towards simulations of the individual components of the rotor to assess the accuracy of the code. In this session, we present the results of some fundamental validation for external aerodynamics using AcuSolve.

Optimization of a Wind Turbine Composite Blade
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

With growing energy demands, the pressure is on to develop designs that not only generate more power, but are lighter, use less material and cheaper than previous generation designs. This poses a serious design challenge. Higher power generation requirements result in larger turbine blades. And since blade mass scales significantly with blade length, it is imperative to keep blade weight down. Moving to composite materials is a big step in this direction, with its attractive strength and weight properties. However, it comes at the cost of increased design complexity. This, combined with complex loading and often conflicting performance requirements (buckling, strength, stiffness etc.), is what makes designing of composite blades challenging. In this presentation, we will showcase how OptiStruct can be used to design and optimize a composite blade structure for different performance targets and weight, ultimately leading to a design with improved efficiency and reliability.

Automated CFD Simulation Processes for Wind Turbine Aerodynamics
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

This presentation will focus on the powerful automation capabilities within the AcuSolve environment. A live demo will be performed to demonstrate how automation can be used to completely build and set-up a full wind turbine model using best practices that have been developed for rotor aerodynamics. Structure Analysis of Towers and Blades for Wind Power Generation
Harold Thomas, Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Structural simulation helps to quickly increase the understanding of the performance and design life of wing power generation structures. Analysis can be performed for metal, plastic, and composite structures undergoing a verity of loadings over the life of the structure. Both performance and operational life can be determined quickly, which allows for design modifications to be investigated before prototypes are built. This analysis is performed using Altair’s structural solver RADIOSS, which is capable of meeting the simulation requirements in various Wind Energy applications. In this presentation, you will experience a showcase of how RADIOSS technology can be leveraged to help resolve challenges faced in the Wind Industry.

Validation of High Fidelity CFD Modeling Approach for Utility Scale Wind Turbines
Dave Corson, AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

A methodology is presented to use a commercially available finite element based flow solver, AcuSolve, to study utility scale wind turbine aerodynamics employing advanced, high fidelity modeling techniques. The wind turbine studied here is based upon the NREL 5-MW offshore design. This machine uses a horizontal axis, 3-bladed rotor with a diameter of 126 meters. Due to the large size of this rotor, the simulations present challenges to CFD practitioners to develop accurate, efficient, and robust modeling approaches. Using the techniques described in this document, steady state Reynolds Averaged Navier Stokes (RANS) and fully transient Detached Eddy Simulation (DES) results were computed for a range of wind speeds and rotor RPMs. Rotor thrust, torque, and power were resolved and compare favorably to accepted results obtained from researchers at laboratories and academic institutions. Flow structures were also identified and compared for different wind speeds using the commercial post processing package, FieldView.

Presenter Bios




Harold Thomas

Dr. Harold Thomas Director of Solver Technology, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Dr. Thomas is in charge of the determining the product development direction of Altair’s solver products RADIOSS and AcuSolve. Dr. Thomas heavily interacts with customers around the world to envision market directions and software trends, and then works with the Altair software development teams to implement important capabilities. In addition, he frequently gives talks on conferences and technical events to promote Altair’s solver technology.

Dr. Thomas has been working in the areas of Structural Optimization, Finite Element Analysis, and Computational Fluid Dynamics for more than 25 years. He studied Mechanical Engineering at the Columbia University in New York City and received his Ph.D. in Aeronautical Engineering from the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA). His Ph.D. dissertation is entitled Improved Approximations for Simultaneous Structural and Control System Synthesis. Besides a number of refereed journal papers, Dr. Thomas has over 40 conference papers and has been on the organizing committee of many AIAA and Altair Engineering conferences. He is an Associate Fellow in the AIAA.


David Corson

Mr. David Corson AcuSolve Program Manager, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Mr. Corson currently holds the position of AcuSolve Program Manager at Altair Engineering, Inc. In this role, Mr. Corson provides technical expertise for the application and development of AcuSolve. Mr. Corson maintains an active role in CFD applications in various engineering disciplines including wind power, oil and gas, atmospheric sciences, and external aerodynamics.

Mr. Corson previously held the position of Senior Analyst at ACUSIM Software. This role focused his efforts on high end CFD analyses involving methods development, consulting, and validation.

Before coming to ACUSIM, Dave spent 8 years working at Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory applying CFD to the design of naval nuclear propulsion systems.

Mr. Corson has a Master of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.


Jon Quigley

Jon Quigley Director of Systems Modeling, Altair Engineering, Inc.

Jon Quigley is the Director of Systems Modeling in Altair Engineering. Jon is responsible for the program direction for the HyperWorks products which apply to modeling complex systems including MotionView, MotionSolve, Suspension Director & Durability Director. Jon has a Bachelors of Science in Aerospace Engineering and a Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Michigan.

Mr. Quigley has 21 years of experience in the CAE industry and spent several years developing custom software for Ford and then applying CAE to the Ford vehicle dynamics domain. Jon rejoined Altair in 2000 as the Program Manager for MotionView and now oversees several products comprising the area of systems modeling.

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