Laboratory for Wind and Solar Energy

Welcome to  the Laboratory for Wind and Solar Energy at the University of Applied Sciences Emden/Leer!

At our laboratory, we engage in both numerical and experimental research on wind turbines, focusing particularly on aerodynamics and structural dynamics. In this context, we collaborate closely with industry partners, as well as national and international research institutions.

In addition, we have a strong focus on harnessing solar energy, which encompasses the fields of photovoltaics and solar thermal systems.

The Laboratory for Wind and Solar Energy is equipped with a variety of test rigs and technical facilities for both wind and solar energy research. These resources are also utilized for educational purposes, providing students with comprehensive knowledge in the field of renewable energy.

Furthermore, our facilities accommodate numerous technichal projects, Bachelor - and Mastertheses, allowing students to gain hands-on experience within our premises.

If you are interested in our work, please feel free to contact us!

In the following, we present an overview of our activities.

The core of our research is the numerical simulation of wind turbines by means of different Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) methods. For this, we use powerful hardware facilities in computer clusters as well as state-of-the-art software.  The main tool for our calculations is the program OpenFOAM.


  • Reynolds-Averaged-Navier-Stokes Simulations
  • Detached- Eddy-Simulations
  • Large-Eddy-Simulations

 The main focus of our current research lies if the fields of:

- complex aerodynamic effects: Himmelskamp effect, dynamic stall, blade tip losses, dynamic inflow, etc.

- Fluid-Structure-Interaction (FSI): Flatter vibrations, vortex-induced-vibrations, etc.

- Aerodynamic blade devices: vortex generators, gurney flaps, winglets, etc.

- Wakes of wind turbines and wind parks.

Apart from this, we also use Blade-Element-Momentum models for the computation of loads on wind turbines and for the analysis of their structural-dynamic behavior.

We compare our numerical results with experiments in order to validate the numerical models. For this, we use our own measurements as well as experimental results from different research cooperations (e.g. MexNEXT project).

Our lab also has a small closed-loop wind tunnel with integrated flow visualization by means of water vapour. This allows to demonstrate the basic flow mechanics principles of wind turbine utilization in a very clear and intuitive manner.

Our students perform further experiments on another small wind tunnel containing a modell wind turbine. This enables them to grasp better the theory from the lectures and to apply it for the analysis of real machines.

Another device, that we use intensivily for education purposes is the our wind turbine drive train. It allows to investigate its efficiency under different operational conditions by adapting the generator load and the rotational speed of the drive motor.

Our Enercon E-18 wind turbine, with a power of 100 kW, is located at the Campus Emden. Our students use it for performing different types of wind energy projects, like e.g. the analysis of the wake characteristics behind the wind turbine. For this, we use a SODAR instrument for measuring the wind speed and wind direction at different heights without requiring a meteorological mast.

We also collect the operational data of our wind turbine for research and teaching purposes.

Remote surface damage detection on rotor blades of operating wind turbines by means of infrared thermography
D. Traphan, I. Herráez, P. Meinlschmidt, F. Schlüter, J. Peinke and G.Gulker
Wind Energy Science, vol. 3, p. 639-650, 2018.

Fluid-structure coupled computations of the NREL 5 MW wind turbine by means of CFD
B. Dose, H. Rahimi, I. Herráez, B. Stoevesandt and J. Peinke
Renewable Energy, vol. 129, p. 591-605, 2018.

Extraction of the wake induction and angle of attack on rotating wind turbine blades from PIV and CFD results
I. Herráez, E. Daniele and J.G. Schepers
Wind Energy Science, vol. 3, p. 1-9, 2018.

Evaluation of different methods for determining the angle of attack on wind turbine blades with CFD results under axial inflow conditions
H. Rahimi, J.G Schepers, W.Z Shen, N. Ramos Garcia, M.S. Schneider, D. Micallef, C.J. Simao Ferreira, E. Jost, L. Klein and I. Herráez
Renewable Energy, vol. 125, p. 866-876, 2018.

Influence of the conservative rotor loads on the near wake of a wind turbine
I. Herráez, D. Micallef, G.A.M. van Kuik and J. Peinke
Journal of Physics: Conference Series, vol. 854, 012022, 2017

All peer-review articles by Prof. Herráez (pdf)

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Iván Herráez


Room: T 1022
Tel.: 04921-8071598
Fax.: 04921-8071593

Tobias Lankenau, M. Eng.

Raum:  T66
Tel.: 04921-8071337

Shumian Zhao, M.Sc.

Raum:  T1027
Tel.: 04921 807-1599

Andrea Matiz C MSc

Raum:  T1027
Tel.: 04921 807-1599