A novel approach to structural load control using intelligent actuators

W.E. Leithead, Victoria Neilson, S. Dominguez, Arkadiusz Dutka, EPSRC, grant number: EP/DO 34566/1 (Funder)

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The recent trend towards large multi-MW wind turbines resulted in the role of the control system becoming increasingly important. The extension of the role of the controller to alleviate structural loads has motivated the exploration of novel control strategies, which seek to maximise load reduction by exploiting the blade pitch system. The reduction of blade fatigue loads through individual blade pitch control is one of the examples. A novel approach to reduction of the unbalanced rotor loads by pitch control is presented in this paper. Each blade is equipped with its own actuator,sensors and controller. These local blade control loops operate in isolation without a need of communication with each other. The single blade control approach to regulation of unbalanced rotor loads presented in this paper has an important advantage of being relatively easy to design and tune. Furthermore, it does not affect the operation of the central controller and the latter need not be re-designed when used in conjunction with the single blade controllers. Their performance is assessed using BLADED simulations.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jun 2009
Event17th Mediterranean Conf. on Control and Automation - Thessaloniki, Greece
Duration: 24 Jun 200926 Jun 2009


Conference17th Mediterranean Conf. on Control and Automation
CityThessaloniki, Greece


  • control systems
  • individual pitch
  • unbalanced rotor loads


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