Analysis and Flight Test Validation of High Performance AirborneWind Turbines
Makani Power has developed an autonomous airborne wind turbine prototype incorporating a rigid wing with onboard generators. An overview of the design is given, and a simple characteristic power curve of the system is derived analytically. The performance of the system in flight tests as well as rigid body, finiteelement tether simulations is compared to that derived by the analytic formulation.
KeywordsWind Speed Wind Turbine Force Balance Power Curve Wing Area
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The author thanks the Makani Power team, including Dr. Kenneth Jensen, Erik Chubb, and Dr. Paula Echevereri, for their ingenuity and hard work, and in particular the late Dr. Corwin Hardham for his unwavering belief in the technology and his leadership through example. Additionally, it should be noted that this work has been supported through funding from the ARPA-E program within the US Department of Energy.