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CFD modelling of wind flow over complex and rough terrain

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posted on 24.01.2011, 11:50 by John D. Walshe
A model has been developed using the general-purpose Navier-Stokes solver CFX4 to simulate Atmospheric Boundary Layer flow over complex terrain. This model has been validated against the measured data from the Askervein Hill experiment, and has been shown to perform well. The CFD model is also compared to the WAsP linear model of wind flow over topography, and a significant improvement is noted for flow over complex topography. Boundary conditions, gridding issues and sensitivity to other solver parameters have all been investigated. An advanced roughness model has been developed to simulate flow over forest canopies, using a resistive body force within the canopy volume. The model is validated against measured data for simple 2D cases, and for a complex 3D case over real topography. The model is shown to give a more physically realistic profile for the wind speed in and just above forest canopies than the standard roughness length model used in most CFD simulations. An automated methodology for setting up CFD simulations using the models described has been developed. A custom pre-processing package to implement this has been written, to enable the use of the CFD methodology in a commercial environment.



  • Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering


© John Walshe

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.

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