EGU24-17394, updated on 17 Apr 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

How do convective cold pools influence the stability and turbulence conditions in the vicinity of wind turbines in Northern Germany?

Jeffrey Thayer, Gerard Kilroy, Norman Wildmann, and Antonia Englberger
Jeffrey Thayer et al.
  • DLR, Atmospheric Physics, Germany (

Convective cold pools routinely pass over the dense network of wind turbines in northern Germany, causing short-term changes in boundary-layer wind speeds (i.e., wind ramp events) and atmospheric stability. These large, rapid, and more-localized variations in the low-level kinematic and thermodynamic structure are difficult for numerical weather prediction models to forecast with sufficient spatial and temporal accuracy for utilization by wind turbine operators. As boundary-layer stability and winds strongly influence wind turbine structural loads, downstream turbulent wake behavior, and power generation, it is important to better understand how rapid changes in dynamic processes evolve within the vertical layer of wind turbine rotor blades (~50 - 150 meters altitude).

Using in-situ observations and high-resolution modeling focused on the WiValdi research wind park in Krummendeich, Germany, we examine how convective cold pool passages during July 2023 impact the inflow and turbulent wakes for two installed turbines with a hub height of 92 meters. Meteorological mast, Doppler wind lidar, and microwave radiometer observations provide upstream and downstream measurements of stability, vertical shear, and turbulence variations at ~1-minute resolution. While this measurement coverage adequately captures the cold pool evolution relative to each turbine, we remain somewhat limited by the fixed instrument locations for measuring upstream conditions and the three-dimensional turbulent wake structure. Therefore, we also utilize the mesoscale model WRF in large-eddy-simulation mode, with inserted generalized actuator disks acting as proxy wind turbines, to analyze far-upstream inflow conditions and three-dimensional wake characteristics during cold pool passages. The proposed work will provide a foundation for future analysis which will more robustly verify WRF output using additional WiValdi instrumentation.

How to cite: Thayer, J., Kilroy, G., Wildmann, N., and Englberger, A.: How do convective cold pools influence the stability and turbulence conditions in the vicinity of wind turbines in Northern Germany?, EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-17394,, 2024.