Assessment of IEC Normal Turbulence Model and Modelling of the Wind Turbulence Intensity for Small Wind Turbine Design in Tropical Area: Case of the Coastal Region of Benin

*Hagninou Elagnon Venance Donnou  -  Laboratoire de Physique du Rayonnement (LPR), Faculté des Sciences et Techniques (FAST), Université d’Abomey-Calavi, 01 B.P.526, Cotonou, Benin
Aristide Barthélémy Akpo  -  Laboratoire de Physique du Rayonnement (LPR), Faculté des Sciences et Techniques (FAST), Université d’Abomey-Calavi, 01 B.P.526, Cotonou, Benin
Guy Hervé Houngue  -  Laboratoire de Physique du Rayonnement (LPR), Faculté des Sciences et Techniques (FAST),, Benin
Basile Bruno Kounouhewa  -  Laboratoire de Physique du Rayonnement (LPR), Faculté des Sciences et Techniques (FAST),, Benin
Received: 3 Jan 2020; Revised: 7 Apr 2020; Accepted: 12 Apr 2020; Published: 15 Jul 2020; Available online: 13 May 2020.
Open Access Copyright (c) 2020 The Authors. Published by Centre of Biomass and Renewable Energy (CBIORE)
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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The wind turbulence intensity observed on a site have an influence the wind turbine energy production and the lifetime of the blades. It is therefore primordial to master this parameter for the optimization of the production. So therefore, this study is interested on the modelling of the wind turbulence intensity at 10 m above the ground on the coast of Benin. Four years of wind data measured on the site of Cotonou Port Authority (PAC) from 2011 to 2014 and recorded with a temporal resolution of 10 min were used. From the transport equation of turbulent kinetic energy followed by a numerical simulation based on the Nelder-Mead algorithm developed under the Matlab software, we proposed five new models for estimating the wind turbulence intensity. The results of the different simulations reveal that four of proposed models and based on the roughness, the speed of friction and the length of Obukhov better fit the data, during the periods of January, April, June, July, August, September and December. The estimators of the Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) and the Mean Absolute Error (MAE) vary from (0.02; 0.01) in December to (0.09; 0.07) in August. As for the model  which is a function of roughness and the wind  shear coefficient (expressed only according to the wind speed), it gives better performance whatever the time of the year and the atmosphere stability conditions. The estimations errors are included between (0.02; 0.01) obtained in December and (0.08; 0.06) observed in March. A comparative study between the existing models in the literature and the best model proposed in this study showed that only this model gives the best adjustment with the data. It can therefore be used on the sites where turbulence is influenced by the roughness and the atmosphere stability. Finally, from this model a new wind turbine design class has been proposed for the site of Cotonou. It takes into account the actual levels of turbulence observed and thus allow to optimize the energy production. 

Keywords: Atmosphere; Model; Simulation; Turbulence intensity; Wind speed

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