Hardware in the Loop Wind Turbine Simulator for Control System Testing

  • Yolanda VidalEmail author
  • Leonardo Acho
  • Ningsu Luo
  • Christian Tutiven
Part of the Advances in Industrial Control book series (AIC)


This chapter illustrates how to set up an inexpensive but effective Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) platform for the test of wind turbine (WT) controllers. The dynamics of the WT are simulated on the open-source National Renewable Energy Laboratory WT simulator called FAST (Fatigue, Aerodynamics, Structures, and Turbulence), which emulates all required input signals of the controller and reacts to the controller commands (almost) like an onshore real turbine of 5 MW. The dynamic torque control system runs on an open hardware Arduino microcontroller board, which is connected to the virtual WT via USB. In particular, the power generation control in the full load region for variable-speed variable-pitch wind turbines is considered through torque and pitch control. The HIL proposed platform is used to characterize the behavior of the WT in normal operation as well as in fault operation. In particular, a stuck/unstuck fault is modeled and the behavior of a proposed chattering torque controller is analyzed in comparison to a baseline torque controller.


Hardware-in-the-loop FAST Arduino Control Fault 



Pitch control, \(k = 1,2,3\)


Generator torque control


Generator speed

\(\hat{\omega }_{g}\)

Filtered generator speed


Rated generator speed


Electrical power


Reference power


Scheduling parameter


Denotes dx/dt



This work has been partially funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness through the research projects DPI2012-32375/FEDER and DPI2011-28033-C03-01, and by the Catalonia Government through the research project 2014 SGR 859.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yolanda Vidal
    • 1
    Email author
  • Leonardo Acho
    • 1
  • Ningsu Luo
    • 2
  • Christian Tutiven
    • 1
  1. 1.Departament de Matemàtica Aplicada IIIUniversitat Politècnica de Catalunya-BarcelonaTECHBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Electrical Engineering, Electronics and Automatic ControlUniversity of GironaGironaSpain

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