OpenFAST Documentation




Apr 11, 2024

OpenFAST is a multi-physics, multi-fidelity tool for simulating the coupled dynamic response of wind turbines. Practically speaking, OpenFAST is the framework (or “glue code”) that couples computational modules for aerodynamics, hydrodynamics for offshore structures, control and electrical system (servo) dynamics, and structural dynamics to enable coupled nonlinear aero-hydro-servo-elastic simulation in the time domain. OpenFAST enables the analysis of a range of wind turbine configurations, including two- or three-blade horizontal-axis rotor, pitch or stall regulation, rigid or teetering hub, upwind or downwind rotor, and lattice or tubular tower. The wind turbine can be modeled on land or offshore on fixed-bottom or floating substructures.

Established in 2017, OpenFAST is an open-source software package that builds on FAST v8 (see FAST v8 and the transition to OpenFAST). The glue code and underlying modules are mostly written in Fortran (adhering to the 2003 standard), and modules can also be written in C or C++. It was created with the goal of being a community model developed and used by research laboratories, academia, and industry. It is managed by a dedicated team at the National Renewable Energy Lab. Our objective is to ensure that OpenFAST is well tested, well documented, and self-sustaining software. To that end, we are continually improving the documentation and test coverage for existing code, and we expect that new capabilities will include adequate testing and documentation. If you’d like to contribute, see the Developer Documentation and any open GitHub issues with the Help Wanted tag.

The following links provide more insight into OpenFAST as a software package:

Documentation Directory