Quantifying Turbulence for Tidal Power Applications

Conference Paper

Title: Quantifying Turbulence for Tidal Power Applications
Publication Date:
September 23, 2010
Conference Name: Oceans 2010
Conference Location: Seattle, Washington
Pages: 8
Technology Type:

Document Access

Website: External Link
Attachment: Access File
(6 MB)


Thompson, J.; Richmond, M.; Polagye, B.; Durgesh, V. (2010). Quantifying Turbulence for Tidal Power Applications. Paper Presented at the Oceans 2010, Seattle, Washington.

Using newly collected data from a tidal power site in Puget Sound, WA, metrics for turbulence quantification are assessed and discussed. Of particular interest is the robustness of the “turbulent intensity,” defined as the ratio of velocity standard deviation to velocity mean. Simultaneously, the quality of raw ping Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) data for turbulence studies is evaluated against Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter (ADV) data at a point. Removal of Doppler noise from the raw ping data is shown to be a crucial step in turbulence quantification. Excluding periods of slack tide, the corrected turbulent intensity estimates at a height of 4.6 m above the seabed are 10% and 11% from the ADCP and ADV, respectively. Estimates of the turbulent dissipation rate are more variable, from 10-3 to 10-1 W/m3. An example analysis of coherent Turbulent Kinetic Energy (TKE) is presented.

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