New supercomputer for frontline wind energy research

Friday 21 Mar 14
DTU Wind Energy has just inaugurated a new supercomputer which will enable researchers to produce more extensive and complex mathematical calculations than ever before. Among other things, the calculations will be used to describe turbulence around a rotating wind turbine blade and ultimately to optimize the blades and extend their lives.

On 18 March, DTU Wind Energy inaugurated a new high-performance supercomputer with extremely high processing capacity. The supercomputer is actually 6400 CPU core processors interconnected in a very fast network, which together can calculate air currents and turbulence, etc., and thus provide a high-resolution image of how the wind moves around a wind turbine blade.

The supercomputer solves several hundred million equations with a corresponding number of unknown variables, which results in detailed information about airspeed, pressure and turbulence around a wind turbine blade in all three dimensions. It can also connect aerodynamic calculations with elastic structural calculations, all of which improves our ability to control wind turbine blades and thus extend their lives.

DTU’s new HPC system ranks among the largest in Denmark and also one of the most eco-friendly. Compared with the largest Danish system installed at Vestas A/S, DTU’s HPC installation has approx. 25 per cent less capacity, but on the other hand uses two-thirds less electrical energy, making the new DTU supercomputer installation the greenest in Denmark with such high performance.