Simulation and Experimental Research Activities on Airborne Wind Energy Systems at UC3M

Dr. G. Sánchez-Arriaga

Bioengineering and Aerospace Engineering Department, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M), Spain

Tuesday, August 14, 2018, 11:00


Although the first work on kite dynamics of the author by using Lagrangian methods dates back to 2006, it has been recently when, in the framework of two small funded projects, this line of research has been boosted in Spain. The group has developed an open-source software named LAKSA, which is aimed at the simulation of the dynamic and control of Airborne Wind Energy Systems (AWES) by implementing a Lagrangian formulation with a minimal coordinate approach. Its four modules mimic the dynamics of 1-line AWES (Ground and Fly-generation schemes), 2-line kites, 4-line kites, and a train of an arbitrary number of kites. Currently, the software implements an open-loop control strategy and its natural continuation is mixing it with close-loop controller and optimization solvers. In parallel, we prepared two tools that, if combined, can be used to determine in the next future the aerodynamic coefficients of tethered flying aircraft by using the so-called estimation-before-modelling technique. The first tool is an experimental setup made of a four-line kite equipped with onboard (airspeed sensor, GPS, magnetometer, inertial navigation unit) and on-ground (tether load and control bar sensors, weather station) instruments for real flight data acquisition. The second is an Extended Kalman Filter specifically designed for UC3M experimental setup. It provides not only conventional state variables, such as kite position and velocity, but also tether tensions and aerodynamic force and torque. This talk summarizes these advances with emphasis on potential collaborations and synergies with the activities at University of Freiburg.