Help running FAST v8 for the first time

Hello everyone,

We are 2 Electrical engineer students who are making our final project in Advance Control for Wind Turbines.
We are trying to reproduce the system described in chapter 4 of “Advanced Control Design For Wind Turbines” by A.D. Wright and L.J. Fingersh from this website, in order to change few elements and analyze it’s consequences.
We tried to use the FAST v8 platform in order to communicate with the MATLAB and Simulink, but without success.

Does anyone maybe have a beginners guide for this tool? We read the README_FAST8 and FAST User’s Guide documents but still there’s something missing. The theory is clear and well explained but we failed trying to activate the MATLAB or the Simulink.

Is there any simple example about how to practically run the tool?

Thanks in advance,
Amit

Dear Amit,

The “Simulink Interface” sections of the old FAST User’s Guide and FAST v8 ReadMe file are usually sufficient to get started. I’m not aware of a more detailed tutorial. What problem are you running into?

Best regards,

Hi Jason, thanks for your reply.

Mainly, my goal is to reproduce the exact system described in chapter 4 of “Advanced Control Design For Wind Turbines” by A.D. Wright and L.J. Fingersh.
link:
http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy08osti/42437.pdf

I have a problem running the software (FASTv8) for the first time. I followed the guide ‘Installing NWTC CAE Tools on PCs Running Windows’ but the cmd keeps aborting the FAST.
I have a basic misunderstanding regarding the “primary input file”. Do i need to create it? What should it contain?

I unzipped the FAST, and now wants to make it work with my MATLAB / Simulink. I’ve followed the Simulink interface, but could’t figure how to make it all run.
Is there any step-by-step guide?

I’ll be happy if someone could clarify it for me.

Many thanks,
Amit

Dear Amit,

I’m still not sure what problem you are running into. What error message do you get when FAST aborts?

Every FAST model has a primary input file. You can find many example models in the CertTest directory of the FAST archive (the primary FAST input file examples have a .fst extension). However, the CART model from the report by Wright and Fingersh is not distributed openly in the public domain. If you don’t care what turbine you want to model, I suggest that you use the land-based NREL 5-MW turbine available as Test18.fst.

Best regards,

Dear Jason,

What do you mean by “the CART model from the report by Wright and Fingersh is not distributed openly in the public domain” ?

I want to model the CART turbine, in order to get the results from Wright and Fingersh report, and then change few parameters and analyze it’s consequences.
Where can i find it’s parameters so i can reproduce the exact system?

Thank you,
Amit

Dear Amit,

As I said, the FAST models of the CART wind turbines at NREL are not in the public domain, but are only available to specific collaborators. To request one of the CART models, you should contact Alan Wright or Paul Fleming of NREL. Alternatively, you can use of the other FAST models we do include in the FAST archive, such as the WindPACT 1.5-MW turbine (Test13.fst) or the NREL 5-MW baseline turbine (Test18.fst).

Best regards,

Dear Jason,

I am very new for FAST simulation code. I am working on ‘Optimization of wind turbine loads for maximum power output and low fatigue loading’. I came across to FAST as most literature used FAST code to compute the performance of wind turbine. I am using 64 bit windows pc. I have downloaded the latest version of FAST (v8.12.00a-bjj) and unzipped it in a folder I created on desktop. I have read the User’s guide and ‘read me’ files, and followed all the instruction but still i am not able to run the code. I think I missed something which I couldn’t figure out. I tried to run the example models that are under CertTest folder (for example Test18.fst and Test19.fst). I tried both by moving all the contents under CertTest folder to bin folder where the executable file is located and leaving at its original location (not moving the files from CertTest to bin). I wonder if you or anyone can give me a tip to skip this issue.

Best regards,

Wondmagegn

Dear Wondmagegn,

Have you read the section titled, “Normal Simulation: Starting FAST from an input file” in the FAST v8.12 ReadMe file? What problem are you running into?

Best regards,

Dear Jason,

Thank you for your replay. Yes, I did read the instruction in ‘ReadMe’ ‘Normal simulation…’. That is why I moved the files with extension .fst from CertTest folder to bin folder where the executable is located; as the instruction says ‘’…it easiest to open up your command window in the directory in which your FAST primary input file and FAST executable are stored’’. I understood the text that they both should be located under the same folder. Please find the attached that is the issue I am dealing with.

Kind regards

Wondmagegn
Capture.PNG

Dear Wondmagegn,

The .fst file references input files for various modules. It looks like you moved the .fst file without also moving the module input files, which for Test19 are in the 5MW_Baseline subdirectory of the CertTest directory. All file paths must be specified correctly in the input files for FAST to run

Best regards,

Dear Jason,

Thank you for your help. It seams I resolved the problem. Now, I able to execute the input files. I really appreciate your kind help.

Best regards

Wondmagegn

I’m facing the same problem, but could not found the module file :unamused: . What do you mean by module input files? where i can find it?

Dear Suni,

The “Input Files” section of the primary input (*.fst) file for FAST v8 contains a list of filenames associated with each module of FAST v8 (ElastoDyn, AeroDyn, etc.). The input files can be specified relative to the location of the FAST primary input file or specified with an absolute path. We recommend that you use quotes around the path/filenames.

Best regards,

Thank you, After six month of struggling, its now open.

When i enter the “test 01.fst” and “test17.fst”, the following results came in screen. Kindly tell the systematic procedure to analysis my whole wind turbine system(blade, tower, assembly).

how to specify the values in input file?

Thank you

Karthikeyan


Dear Suni,

It looks like FAST is running as it should.

Unfortunately we don’t have detailed step-by-step instructions for how to make use of FAST. Regardless, a good way to learn FAST is to review the presentations and sample models/simulations that were presented at our last modeling workshop. These are available for FAST v8.08 (not quite the newest version, but I don’t have newer materials that are so comprehensive) in my in my Sep 15, 2014 post in the forum topic found here: http://forums.nrel.gov/t/modeling-workshops/523/1. After that, I suggest that you study the various user’s guides and theory manuals.

Best regards,

Dear Friends,
As per the information given in the “read me fast” document, paraview software was installed. but vizualization could not be seen after getting output for TEST01.fast under certest folder.

whether VTK-type files will be generated or where can i find in fast files directory?

Thank you

Karthikeyan

Dear Karthikeyan,

Did you tell FAST to generate VTK files by setting WrVTK from the FAST primary input file (Test01.fst) to 1 or 2 before running the simulation?

Best regards,

Dear all

I am a Ph.D. student at National Taiwan University and trying to use the latest version of FAST (FAST_v8_64) to simulate an offshore wind turbine. This is my first time I am going to use this code. I have already read these PDF files 1- Installing NWTC CAE Tools on PCs Running Windows® 2- FAST User’s Guide 3- FAST v8.16.00a-bjj. Please anyone can help me about the followings (in our group we totally have no experience about it):

1- Does FAST have any user interface environment or no it is working with the windows command line? In other words, can we, for example, use MATLAB Simulink to work with FAST or no we should code somewhere (where?!)?

2- I still cannot run the FAST; I am confused, we should run the FAST with MATLAB or windows command (cmd)? I tried to run it with cmd, I faced an error.

3- Please if anyone has done an example with FAST, I will be very happy if can send it to me (musavi6889@yahoo.com) so I can see and learn from your simulation.

Looking forward to any helps. Thank you all.

Dear All,

I’ve resolved my problem by copying the “AWT27” folder to the “bin” folder; which means when I put the “FAST_x64”, “Test01.fst”, and “AWT27” all together in the “bin” folder, then the cmd ran without error.

“FAST terminated normally.”

*** My next question is how I can use the outputs? Especially I would like to visualize them. If anyone has any experience please share with me. I have ParaView as well. Thank you all.

Dear Mahmoud,

I’m happy to hear that you are finally able to run FAST. Instead of moving Test01.fst and the AWT27 directory to the bin directory, you could also copy the FAST_x64.exe file from the bin to the CertTest directory.

You can plot the time series e.g. through MCrunch or a more simple plotting script.

To visualize the wind turbine response through animation e.g. in ParaView will require that you enable the visualization functionality of FAST through the primary FAST input file. See the FAST v8 ReadMe file for more information on the visualization functionality of FAST v8: wind.nrel.gov/nwtc/docs/README_FAST8.pdf.

Best regards,