NAWEA/WindTech 2019 Conference

The NAWEA/WindTech 2019 Conference took place at the University of Massachusetts Amherst on October 14th–16th, 2019.  This was an opportunity for wind energy academics and researchers to discuss the Grand Vision for Wind Energy and its implications. Thought leaders from around the world discussed the pivotal role wind energy will play in the transition from a system based primarily on fossil fuels to one primarily supported by renewable energy. The conference focused on the challenges in wind energy science, as well as the economic, environmental and social policy aspects of this transition.  It combined the longstanding North American Wind Energy Academy (NAWEA) Symposium and the International Conference on Future Technologies in Wind Energy (WindTech) and was developed in collaboration with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the European Academy of Wind Energy.

The conference was dedicated to research and education, and included technical sessions, panel discussions, a graduate student symposium, a poster session, engineering software workshops, business meetings, social events, and opportunities for interesting excursions.

Topics included:

  • Wind resource (for example: atmospheric boundary layer investigations, mesoscale/microscale interactions, field studies and CFD modeling, forecasting, and remote sensing.)
  • Meteorological/oceanographic design conditions (such as extreme events, turbulence, ocean waves, and air-sea interactions.)
  • Turbine technology (including aeroelasticity, turbine components, blades, fatigue, and turbine level modelling)
  • Wind plant design (for example: multiple turbines working together as single power plants, design for system level reliability, plant level modelling, and wakes)
  • Wind power system integration (electrical power systems, energy storage, power to X, wind/water systems, and market design)
  • Social, environmental, economics and policy (including public acceptance, public policy, environmental impacts, permitting, and wind turbine noise)
  • Turbine lifecycle considerations (such as manufacturing, infrastructure, cradle to grave design, composite materials, and wind plant life extension)
  • Wind system controls (turbine controls, system level controls, multi-criteria decision making, and system health monitoring)
  • Structures, safety and reliability (support structures, foundations, structural reliability, design for maintainability and related topics)
  • Offshore wind energy (fixed and floating turbines, offshore infrastructure, offshore geotechnical aspects, and site investigations )
  • Distributed wind power/hybrid power systems (small/medium scale wind turbines, system level control, load management, DG systems with PV and/or energy storage)
  • Education (graduate level courses in wind energy related topics, interdisciplinary topics, on-line courses, collaboration between universities, and international cooperation)

Post conference events included meetings of the North American Wind Energy Academy, OpenFAST and SOWFA/Nalu software workshops, a PhD student symposium, a field trip to the Massachusetts Wind Turbine Blade Test Facility and meetings of a number of working groups of the International Energy Agency.

A banquet  was held  at the at the historic Inn on Boltwood in Amherst center. The banquet featured live jazz music as well as local farm-to-table food and hors d'oeuvres .