Meet the future

Meet the future - Oliver Lylloff

Tuesday 05 May 20


Oliver Ackermann Lylloff
PhD student
DTU Wind Energy

Oliver Lylloff is a PhD student at DTU Wind Energy and dedicated to his work with acoustics. He pursues his interest in sound at DTU Wind Energy in the Section for Aerodynamic Design, where he is engaged in his PhD project which takes place in the Poul La Cour wind tunnel at DTU Risø Campus.

Oliver answers the phone from his home at Østerbro in Copenhagen. Sounds of happy children appear in the background – everyone in the household is at home because of the Corona virus situation. Work is still going on so we are holding our meeting as planned.

Oliver's professional background is not in the field of wind energy, he says. When asked which study he came from originally, he replies that he studied Physics at the University of Copenhagen because he was interested in astronomy. "But then I was captured by acoustics," he says, and that meant a course change in the field of study. Consequently, Oliver switched to DTU Elektro to get his Master's degree there. After his graduation from DTU, he wished to continue at DTU as a PhD student. However, at that time the right PhD project in relation to his interest was missing. Instead, he got a job as an acoustician and worked for a couple of years as a consultant in a private company doing environmental assessments on railway noise and road noise.

One day, Oliver's supervisor from DTU contacted him because he had heard of a PhD proposal at DTU Wind Energy that might match Oliver's interest. The timing was perfect because at the same time, Oliver was missing challenges in his working life and wanted to return to the work area he had been doing at DTU Elektro. He got the position as a PhD student at DTU Wind Energy in 2017. Here, he became a part of the Section for Aerodynamic Design (AER) with Senior Researcher Andreas Fischer as his supervisor. At DTU Wind Energy, he works with validation of noise measurements done in the Poul La Cour Wind Tunnel to ensure accurate so-called aero-acoustic measurements. The purpose of his PhD project ”Aero-acoustic wind tunnel tests“ is helping researchers and companies evaluating prototypes on the future's advanced wind turbine blade design and noise reduction mechanisms. The aim is to isolate and measure the noise coming from the wind turbine blade profile, explains Oliver and elaborates: "Removing the noise from the wind in the wind tunnel in order to isolate the noise from the wind turbine blade is technically demanding.

Where is your research going to be used?
“Development of new wind turbine blades can be divided into three steps, roughly: Firstly, a design using computer simulations is to be found. Then a prototype of the wind turbine blade profile is validated experimentally in a wind tunnel and finally, full-scale experiments are performed. My research will probably be used in the second stage of that value chain, and it will contribute to the development of the future wind turbines with larger, lighter and less noisy wind turbines”, replies Oliver. From a broader perspective, the ambition is to help create more accurate measurement methods for validation and development of advanced wind turbine blades in order to increase energy production in a future without fossil fuels.

Another topic is the culture at the workplace DTU Vindenergi. How do you experience the culture here?
Oliver says he indeed thrives in the Wind Tunnel group, which he calls the small group of 6-8 dedicated employees who are regular visitors in the Poul La Cour wind tunnel. Like the rest of the department, here is a good atmosphere. His experience is that the hierarchy of the department is flat: “The professor always has time for one, and you can talk to everyone without feeling that you are a burden. In that way, there is plenty of space and very friendly. “And it is great to have a leader like Flemming Rasmussen (AER's Head of Section, ed.) who can really motivate you. He has been a part of the research in wind energy since the very beginning and he is still enthusiastic and open to ideas”.
Oliver is happy about the group of PhD students, too. “It is a great advantage to have the other PhD students to discuss with in everyday life", Oliver says, elaborating: "In the Wind Tunnel group, I am the only PhD student, so it is good to be in touch with the other PhD students at the department”.

Do you have any good advice for upcoming PhD students?
“At DTU Wind Energy, we have a unique workplace, at which there is not much distance between people despite major academic differences, depending on where you are in your career. As an employee, you should take advantage of that. It is great that I have had the opportunity to talk to everyone at the department."

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11 JULY 2020