Research paper: On the spatial variability of the flow characteristics at a Tidal energy site: Case of the Raz Blanchard




Tidal turbines will be installed in strongly turbulent flows. One of the main problems of turbine developers is to have a good knowledge of the flow before deploying the turbines. Indeed, a high loading frequency induced by turbulence could increase the blade fatigue and damage the turbines. Acoustic Doppler Current Profilers deployed at tidal sites permits to characterize the flows.
However, results are only available at one location. In areas with very complex bottom morphology, turbulence is expected to vary strongly spatially and thus punctual ADCP measurements are not sufficient. We developed a Large Eddy Simulation (LES) model, in TELEMAC, to simulate the flow in the Raz Blanchard, a tidal energy site located between the Cap de La Hague Cap and the Alderney Island. The LES model covers a 1.8 x 2.5 km2 area and is embedded in a wider domain where the tidal flow is solved with a Reynolds Averaged model. In the contribution, we present the model validation with ADCP data. Then, we analyse the spatial distribution of the current velocity and the turbulence intensity, under contrasted tidal flow conditions.


S. Guillou, A. Bourgoin, J. Thiébot, R. Ata