Edge Wind  

San Juan, 
Puerto Rico
http://www.edgewind.net
  • Booth: 2586


Increases Wind Turbine Production While Reducing Blade Wear

EdgeWind was spun out of Edge Aerodynamix to develop wind power applications of the FAA STC Approved Conformal Vortex Generator (CVG) tape and tabs technology that they developed for aircraft winds and helicopter rotor blades.

CVG Tape increases annual wind turbine energy production, provides protection from erosion and impacts, and reduces drag caused by leading edge erosion. 

 

Proof-of-concept testing with NREL showed that the CVG + Tab increased annual power generation 22.2% (NREL Report Available). Edge is currently looking for field trial sites with GE, Vestas, and siemens turbines and low turbulence in the US & EU to collect the data required to CFD model and optimize the design for each turbine brand. 

Edge Aerodynamic has developed a Conformal Vortex Generator (CVG) technology that improves the aerodynamic efficiency of aircraft wings and rotor blades. The company has received a Supplemental Type Certificates (STC) from the FAA and EASA authorizing the CVG modification to Boeing 737 series aircraft operating in North America and Europe. The company is currently going through the STC testing process on other Boeing and Airbus aircraft models. For a large airline, the Edge CVG technology means hundreds of millions of dollars in annual fuel cost savings without downtime for the aircraft modifications.


 Show Specials

  • Proof-of-concept testing with NREL showed a 22.2% increase in annual power generated. Visit Booth #2586 at the show for a briefing on the NREL test results report which shows substantial increases. Further testing is required on each major brand of wind turbines to optimize the designs and confirm results across a wider array of sites, turbine brands, and wind conditions.

    Edge Wind is currently looking for field trial sites in the United States and Europe to collect the data required to CFD model and optimize the design for each turbine brand. The sites should meet the following criteria:

    • 100+ MW wind farms located in a prime wind generation location with stable, non-turbulent wind patterns.
    • Sites should have General Electric, Vestas, or Siemens Gamesa Turbines
    • Site owner should have their own O&M staff that will be responsible for installing the CVG and Tab on two to three of their turbines.

    Edge Wind will provide the CVG and Tab materials, installation training, and the LIDAR equipment that is required to measure wind speeds during the period of testing. We expect the trial may go through several iterations as we optimize the CVG and Tab design for each brand of turbine. The CVG can serve as a replacement for leading edge tape or can be installed behind the leading edge tape without needing to remove the existing leading edge tape.

    Site owners will keep all additional power generated during the field trial. After the trial is completed, participating site owners will get preferential terms relative to non-participants if they chose to implement the Edge CVG and Tab once it is commercially available in the later part of 2017.


 Press Releases

  • PANAMA CITY BEACH, FLORIDA, November 30, 2016 – Edge Aerodynamix, a company whose products save fuel and energy by improving the aerodynamic efficiency of aircraft wings and rotor blades, today announced that its Conformal Vortex Generator (CVG) technology has received a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). 
    The FAA granted the STC authorizing CVG modification to Boeing 737-300 through 737-900ER Series aircraft. 
    Edge Aerodynamix’s CVG technology provides significant fuel and energy savings by reducing aerodynamic drag. The CVG utilizes an elastomeric adhesive-backed film that is applied to the surface of an airplane wing or helicopter rotor blade (CVG for wind turbine applications is under development). The film produces a passive, hybrid, laminar flow control effect resulting from an array of small vortices formed in the laminar sub boundary layer of the surface. This flow structure reduces drag from viscous and shock/boundary layer interaction, thereby reducing the amount of fuel a transonic aircraft consumes. 
    The Boeing 737 is the most widely used airliner in history. A Supplemental Type Certificate is issued when an applicant has received FAA approval to modify an aeronautical product from its original design. 
    “The CVG is a technology breakthrough that will enable substantial fuel savings, which translates into significant energy savings and greatly reduced hydrocarbon emissions and environmental impact,” said Peter Ireland, CEO of Edge Aerodynamix and inventor of the patented CVG technology. ”This is especially apparent when looking at CVG benefits across an entire fleet: the reduction in drag during the cruise phase of an aircraft’s flight results in a reduction in fuel consumption and hydrocarbon emissions. The potential future economic benefits are considerable. For a large airline it means hundreds of millions of dollars in annual fuel cost savings without downtime for the modifications to the aircraft.”  
    The result of more than 20 years of development, the eco-friendly CVG can be installed in less than four hours without making major modifications to the aircraft and do not require any capital investment.  
    “Our STC approval for Boeing 737 aircraft is a milestone in our efforts to bring CVG technology to a wider market,” noted Ireland. “Our long-range plans include developing products for the Airbus A320/330/340, wind turbine blades, and other aircraft applications.”
    About Edge Aerodynamix 
    Founded in 2011 by Captain Peter Ireland, Edge Aerodynamix is a research-driven business dedicated to discovering innovative fluid dynamics technology solutions to improve efficiency. Headquartered in the Grand Bahamas with a research and development branch in Panama City Beach, Florida, Edge Aerodynamix specializes in bringing to market fixed-wing, rotorcraft and wind turbine products that provide greater fuel and energy efficiency and safety along with reduced maintenance costs. 
    For more information, visit www.edge.aero, or contact Tony Biela at tbiela@edge.aero.
  • Edge Wind has contracted with the U.S. National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) to conduct and independent field testing program to evaluate the performance. This research project, TSA-16-853 began in June 2016 and is expected to be completed in May 2017 before the AWEA Wind Power show. 7 of the research objectives have been completed as of mid-February, two are in progress, and four remaining ones remain to be completed.

    Edge Wind Objectives

    • Offer the wind industry a blade leading edge protection/repair treatment which, at a minimum, does not degrade turbine performance
    • Mitigate adverse impacts to blade aerodynamic performance and rotor power production inherent to existing blade leading edge protection/repair treatments
    • Attenuate unsteady separated aerodynamic interactions and structural fatigue loads caused by blade passage through inflow shear or turbulence

    Hierarchy of Field Test Measurements

    • Power performance – generator electrical power and rotor mechanical power
    • Aerostructural loads – source of rotor torque and fatigue loads
    • Blade flow field – source of blade aerodynamic loads and direct indication of CVG effects

    Summary of Field Testing Program

    Passive aerodynamic flow control technologies invented by Edge Wind, consisting of leading edge repair tapes augmented with conformal vortex generators (CVG’s) and trailing edge tabs, will be field tested at NREL’s National Wind Technology Center (NWTC) on the two-bladed Controls Advanced Research Turbine (CART2). This will be accomplished through CART2 power performance testing of these devices across a range of inflow and turbine operating conditions. Power performance testing will be accompanied by measurement of time varying aerostructural loads at the blade roots and on the low speed shaft. Device effectiveness will be assessed against a reference datum acquired through CART2 power performance and aerostructural loads testing with baseline unmodified blades. For select inflow conditions, turbine operating states, and flow control configurations, power performance and aerostructural loads data may be augmented with visualizations of the blade surface flow field. Testing will be structured in an incremental manner as described below.

    Field Testing Tasks

    1. The NWTC will convert the CART2 turbine controller from variable speed operation to constant speed operation. This conversion will eliminate rotor speed as a variable in these tests, which will serve to isolate rotor power performance and blade aerodynamic response as the measured quantities of interest. Focusing on these quantities will provide the most direct indication regarding effectiveness of the Edge Wind CVG’s and trailing edge tabs.  PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    2. The NWTC will extract and post process power performance and aerostructural loads data acquired with the CART2 blades in the baseline unmodified state, around 2004. These data will be analyzed to extract relevant statistics regarding power performance and aerostructural loads, to serve as an initial reference datum for subsequent testing in this project. Raw data in CSV or similar format, and processed data will be delivered promptly to Edge Wind, with sufficient documentation to enable understanding of the data.        PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    3. Edge Wind will apply 3M leading edge tapes to the blade with support from the NWTC, based on surveys of the blade surfaces. Then, the NWTC will operate the CART2 in constant speed mode with the 3M leading edge tapes applied, to characterize turbine power performance and time varying aerostructural loads. Edge Wind and the NWTC will cooperatively define the wind speeds to be targeted for testing, number and duration of individual data sets, and overall length of the data acquisition period, with reference to IEC 61400 in conjunction with NWTC historical inflow statistics. PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    4. The NWTC will extract and post process power performance and aerostructural loads data acquired with the CART2 blades having 3M leading edge tapes applied. These data will be analyzed to extract relevant statistics regarding power performance and aerostructural loads, and will be compared to the reference datum previously established using the baseline unmodified blade data. Raw data in CSV or similar format, and processed data will be delivered promptly to Edge Wind, with sufficient documentation to enable understanding of the data. PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    5. Once testing with 3M leading edge tapes is complete, Edge Wind will remove the 3M leading edge tapes and will apply Edge Wind CVG's to the blade with support from the NWTC, based on surveys of the blade surfaces. Then, the NWTC will operate the CART2 in constant speed mode with the Edge Wind CVG's applied, to characterize turbine power performance and time varying aerostructural loads. Edge Wind and the NWTC will cooperatively define the wind speeds to be targeted for testing, number and duration of individual data sets, and overall length of the data acquisition period, with reference to IEC 61400 in conjunction with NWTC historical inflow statistics. PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    6. The NWTC will extract and post process power performance and aerostructural loads data acquired with the CART2 blades having Edge Wind CVG's applied. These data will be analyzed to extract relevant statistics regarding power performance and aerostructural loads, and will be compared to the reference datum previously established using the baseline unmodified blade data. Raw data in CSV or similar format, and processed data will be delivered promptly to Edge Wind, with sufficient document to enable understanding of the data. PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    1. After testing with the first configuration of Edge Wind CVG’s is complete, Edge Wind will remove the first configuration CVG’s and will apply a second configuration of CVG's to the blade with support from the NWTC. Then, the NWTC will operate the CART2 in constant speed mode with the Edge Wind CVG's applied, to characterize turbine power performance and time varying aerostructural loads. Edge Wind and the NWTC will cooperatively define the wind speeds to be targeted for testing, number and duration of individual data sets, and overall length of the data acquisition period, with reference to IEC 61400 in conjunction with NWTC historical inflow statistics.   PROJECT STATUS: IN PROGRESS
       
    2. The NWTC will extract and post process power performance and aerostructural loads data acquired with the CART2 blades having Edge Wind second configuration of CVG's applied.  These data will be analyzed to extract relevant statistics regarding power performance and aerostructural loads, and will be compared to the reference datum previously established using the baseline unmodified blade data. Raw data in CSV or similar format, and processed data will be delivered promptly to Edge Wind, with sufficient document to enable understanding of the data. Completion of Tasks 1.7 through 1.10 will take place during 1 February – 31 May 2017. PROJECT STATUS: IN PROGRESS
       
    3. After testing with the Edge Wind CVG's alone, Edge Wind will leave the Edge Wind CVG's in place and will add trailing edge tabs to the blade, with support from the NWTC. Then, the NWTC will operate the CART2 in constant speed mode with the Edge Wind CVG's and trailing edge tabs applied, to characterize turbine power performance and time varying aerostructural loads with blades modified only with leading edge tapes. Edge Wind and the NWTC will cooperatively define the wind speeds to be targeted for testing, number and duration of individual data sets, and overall length of the data acquisition period, with reference to IEC 61400 in conjunction with NWTC historical inflow statistics. PROJECT STATUS: TO BE COMPLETED
       
    4. The NWTC will extract and post process power performance and aerostructural loads data acquired with the CART2 blades with both Edge Wind CVG’s and trailing edge tabs applied together. These data will be analyzed to extract relevant statistics regarding power performance and aerostructural loads, and will be compared to the reference datum previously established using the baseline unmodified blade data. Raw data in CSV or similar format, and processed data will be delivered promptly to Edge Wind, with sufficient documentation to enable understanding of the data. PROJECT STATUS: TO BE COMPLETED

    1. Test measurements acquired with 3M leading edge tapes, Edge Wind CVG’s, trailing edge tabs, and combinations thereof as described above, will be compared with test measurements for the baseline unmodified blade. Based on the differential between these data sets and the unmodified baseline data sets, Edge Wind will decide whether or not to proceed with further testing, and will provide direction to the NWTC accordingly.  PROJECT STATUS: TO BE COMPLETED

    1. To support decision making by Edge Wind regarding future testing on the GE 1.5 MW turbine at the NWTC, the NWTC will do the following. Historical wind resource raw data will be extracted from NREL/NWTC archives, post processed, and used to calibrate wind resource distributions. These calibrated wind resource distributions then will be used in connection with standardized uncertainty analyses to project test durations needed to achieve statistically significant results for Edge Wind purposes. To enable access to the GE 1.5 MW blades for device installation and removal, the NWTC will obtain estimates for subcontracting a suitably sized crane, a Spider platform, and a rope crew. In addition, the NWTC also will project technician personnel needed to support subcontractor assets and personnel for these three access options.  The NWTC will survey instrumentation currently available on the GE 1.5 MW turbine and on the associated meteorological tower, to determine whether existing instrumentation and data acquisition will meet Edge Wind needs, and will develop alternatives or plan for upgrades in case existing assets are deemed insufficient. Finally, the external geometry of the GE 1.5 MW blade will be extracted for selected radial locations, and contours for the leading and trailing edge vicinities will be isolated to avoid compromising GE intellectual property. The resulting “sanitized” geometry files will be provided to Edge Wind to enable them to design CVG’s and trailing edge tabs to be used in connection with testing on the GE 1.5 MW turbine at the NWTC. PROJECT STATUS: COMPLETED
       
    2. At the conclusion of Phase 1 of this field testing project, the NWTC will prepare a report, documenting test objectives and planning; NWTC inflow environment and measurements; turbine geometry, operation, and instrumentation; data acquisition and processing; and power performance and aerostructural loads. The report will be delivered to Edge Wind in draft form for their review, and revision instructions will be returned to the NWTC for their action, with a final revised version submitted to Edge Aerodynamics by the NWTC.  PROJECT STATUS: TO BE COMPLETED
  • Edge Wind was spun out of Edge Aerodynamix to develop wind power applications of the Conformal Vortex Generator (CVG) tape and tab technology that they developed for aircraft wings and helicopter rotor blades. This technology increases annual wind turbine energy production, provides protection from erosion and impacts, reduces drag caused by leading edge erosion, reduces startup speeds, and reduces vibrations. The CVG tape and tab is installed rapidly by two technicians on a rope rig or aerial high lift with minimal surface preparation.

    Edge Wind has worked with the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory to collect data over an eleven month period on the performance of the CVG and Tab relative to industry standard edge protection tape on the 600 KW CART 2 wind turbine in Golden, Colorado.

    5 minute average power and wind speed over five data was collected. The data was filtered to remove noise from unstable wind. Data for the baseline was limited at wind speeds over 15 meters per second and data for the CVG + Tab is still being collected The improved performance over the CVG and Baseline is expected to continue once data is collected for higher wind speeds.

    NREL reported a 22.2% increase in KWH production from the CVG and the Tab relative to a conventional leading edge taped blade along with a 20.9% increase for the CVG alone. This shifts the power curve between the cut-in and full production wind speeds. AEP for CVG+TAB was limited due to reduced wind strength during test period (which is ongoing). AEP based only on improvement for range of test data, not extrapolated to show probable AEP for equal wind range.


     

    Edge is currently looking for field trial sites with GE, Vestas, and Siemens Gamesa turbines and low turbulence in the US & EU to collect the data required to CFD model and optimize the design for each turbine brand. Based on our experience from the B737 test process, we expect that turbine model specific optimization will yield additional increases in power output.

    Visit Booth #2586 at the AWEA Wind Power show for a briefing on the NREL test results report and how your wind project could benefit from a field trial with Edge Wind and NREL. For more details, the NREL report can be downloaded at  http://edgewind.net/NRELEdgeReport.pdf .


 Products

  • Conformal Vortex Generator Tape
    Edge has developed a conformal vortex generator tape for protecting the leading edge of wind turbines. This tape is currently being tested at NREL with preliminary results showing a 22.2% increase in annual power generated....

  • Wind Turbines lose roughly 1.5% efficiency every year through erosion. Usage of available erosion protection tape further diminishes performance by an average of 6%. Although Erosion protection products reduce blade replacement costs by extending the life of the blades, operator maintenance costs actually increase due to the limited life of the tape. Existing materials cannot survive long in rain impact and require constant maintenance and replacement materials. This increased maintenance results in lost revenue/energy due to the inactivity of the blades.

    The Conformal Vortex Generator (CVG) is placed on the leading edge of the wing and other surfaces and produces pairs of counter-rotating vortices in the lower boundary layer. These vortices reduce shock wave induced vibration, increase attached free stream flows, energize the boundary layer, and create suction on the boundary layer.

    This technology increases annual wind turbine energy production, provides protection from erosion and impacts, and reduces drag caused by leading edge erosion. The CVG material provides structural protection of the blades, protecting against blade tip erosion from icing, storms, and contaminants such as salt while also repairing damage from turbine blade erosion and restores performance.  

    The CVG is installed rapidly by two technicians on a rope rig or aerial high lift. Minimal surface preparation is needed. No special tooling is required. CVG is applied two minutes per foot of blade length. The CVG can be easily removed and repaired.  
  • Lift Enhancing Tabs
    Lift enhancing tabs reduce cut-in wind speed (increases production), increases torque (improves the performance curve across all wind speeds), reduces tip loading and out of plane bending, and relieves root load reducing gear box stress....

  • The tabs are being tested at NREL with the CVG. When combined with the CVG tape, they increased annual power generation by 22.2% in the NREL tests.