What is Murmuration?

Have you ever noticed a group of birds in the sky and wondered how they are able to fly in such deliberate and orchestrated patterns?

 

Source: BBC Cymru Wales

Starlings, in particular, are able to “maintain cohesion as a group in a highly uncertain environment and with limited, noisy information,”  according to a study published several years ago. How? The simple explanation is that each individual bird communicates with its seven closest neighbors in a trade-off to “optimize group cohesion and individual effort.” This phenomenon is called murmuration; yes, as in a murmur or whisper. Each bird murmurs to its neighbors, benefitting not only itself, but also the group. 

Murmuration and Wind Turbine Efficiency

The principles of murmuration can also be applied to a field of wind turbines. WindESCo’s team has studied how pursuing maximum AEP for an individual turbine will negatively impact wind turbine efficiency, both for the optimized turbine's neighbors and the individual itself. The individual spends too much time excessively “chasing” the wind, while wake produced by that turbine negatively impacts production at nearby turbines

The result is reduced energy production and efficiency at the farm level.

Through years of data analysis and modeling, WindESCo has created a closed-loop technology that has the potential to deliver back 3-5% AEP across a wind site. WindESCo Swarm uses collaborative interaction, or socialization, between turbines to maximize the entire farm's output potential, rather than simply considering how to optimize individual assets.

We’ll be sharing more details about WindESCo Swarm, how it is implemented, and the benefits it can have for wind farms negatively impacted by wake effects at our upcoming webinar. Register now to be among the first to learn about this groundbreaking new technology in wind turbine efficiency.