Featured Wall of Wind Projects

View all NSF Funded Projects.


Wind-Induced Vibration of Full-Scale PV Systems

Published Paper: A new experimental-numerical approach to estimate peak wind loads on roof-mounted photovoltaic systems by incorporating inflow turbulence and dynamic effects

To address wind induced vibrations of PV systems, multi-scale wind load measurements are conducted using PV systems located on the roof of a building model. The PV panel orientations are adjusted to different tilt angles that would generally encompass common residential installations in North America. The goal of the study was to compare the net aerodynamic forces acting on an individual roof-mounted PV panel measured at full scale.

Aerodynamic Mitigation and Power System (AMPS)
Patented: US 2015/0345472 A1

Published Paper: Active AerodynamicsMitigation and Power Production System for Buildings and Other Structures

The roof is the most vulnerable part of a low rise building as it is often affected in the event of high winds that produce high suctions or uplift forces on the edges and corners. This study investigates the application of an active mitigation strategy, in the form of an Active Aerodynamics Mitigation and Power Production System (AMPS) (United States Patent Application Publication, Pub. No.: US 2015/0345472 A1, Pub. Date: Dec. 3, 2015), designed to simultaneously reduce wind damage and provide power to buildings, homes, and other infrastructures. The system consists of horizontal axis wind turbines attached to the roof edges with or without gutters. This study shows that the active mitigation system can be utilized to prevent wind induced damage to the roof while generating wind energy.


Reynolds Number Effects on twin Box Girder Long Span Bridge Aerodynamics

Published Paper: Reynolds number effects on twin box girder long span bridge aerodynamics

This work investigates the effects of Reynolds number (Re) on the aerodynamic characteristics of a twin-deck bridge. A 1:36 scale sectional model of a twin girder bridge was tested and static tests were performed, instrumented with pressure taps and load cells, at high wind speeds with Re ranging from 1.3 × 106 to 6.1 × 106 based on the section width. Results show that the section was almost insensitive to Re when pitched to negative angles of attack. However, mean and fluctuating pressure distributions changed noticeably for zero and positive wind angles of attack while testing at different Re regimes. The pressure results suggested that with the Re increase, a larger separation bubble formed on the bottom surface of the upstream girder accompanied with a narrower wake region. Flow modification due to the Re increase also helped in distributing forces more equally between the two girders.


Standing Seam Metal Roof Testing

Published Paper: Full-scale testing to evaluate the performance of standing seam metal roofs under simulated wind loading/

The current methods for evaluating the adequacy of metal roofs in withstanding wind-induced loads involve undertaking uniform uplift pressure tests. This research work presents results of a full-scale experimental study conducted under more realistic wind loading with the panels installed as they would be in the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) E1592 test chamber. The research objectives were to (i) measure the uplift roof pressure experience by mono-sloped standing seam metal roofs and compare them with the provisions of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) 7–10 standard, (ii) evaluate the performance of standing seam roofs under high winds, and (iii) compare the deflections and failure modes observed under more realistic wind loading to uniform loading tests.


Wind-Driven Rain Deposition on Low-Rise Building

Published Paper: Distribution of wind-driven rain deposition on low-rise buildings: Direct impinging raindrops versus surface runoff

Wind-driven rain (WDR) effects on various components of a building façade are dependent on the total volume of rain water deposition. The total volume of WDR deposition at a specific location on the building façade has contributions from both directly impinging rain drops and accumulated surface runoff. The distribution of WDR deposition over the building surface is dependent on the nature of the storm and on the aerodynamic shape of the building. This work presents an experimental study conducted to investigate the distribution of WDR deposition on the external façade of low-rise buildings.


Thunderstorm Downburst-Induced Loading on Buildings

Published Paper: Dynamic properties of an aeroelastic transmission tower subjected to synoptic and downburst-like outflows

This Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award will advance understanding of thunderstorm downburst wind characteristics and the consequent downburst-induced loading on buildings. This award will contribute to the NSF role in the National Windstorm Impact Reduction Program (NWIRP). This project will address three integrated research and education aims: (1) bridge the gap between meteorology and wind engineering paradigms to inform experimental simulation methods at the NHERI WOW facility to produce realistic downburst flow and to assess the uncertainty in the resulting flow field, (2) analyze and understand the downburst aerodynamic loading on buildings and possible aeroelastic effects using large-scale testing at the NHERI WOW facility, and (3) integrate downburst flow characteristics and aerodynamic and aeroelastic loading research into interconnected educational activities to prepare the next generation of researchers and teachers in the field of windstorm hazards.


NSF Funded Projects 

NSF Grant Number

PI Name (Institution)

Project Title


Amal Elawady (Florida International University)

CAREER: Bridging the Global Gap on Understanding Downburst Impacts on Buildings: Field Data-Modeling Research and Education for More Resilient Communities


David Roueche (Auburn University)

Reconstruction of Four-Dimensional Near-Surface Wind Characteristics from Debris and Damage Attributes using Computer Vision


Hannah Blum

Assessment of Building Resiliency in Tornadoes Considering Transient Internal Pressure Effects


Wei Song (University of Alabama)

Collaborative Research: RTHS Enabled Damping System Assessment using Aeroelastic Models of Tall Buildings


Wei Song (University of Alabama)

Collaborative Research: RTHS Enabled Damping System Assessment using Aeroelastic Models of Tall Buildings


Vladimir Vantsevich

S&AS:INT:COLLAB: Aerodynamic Intelligent Morphing System (A-IMS) for Autonomous Smart Utility Truck Safety and Productivity in Severe Environments


Dr. Tathagata Ray, NSF

RII Track-1: Kentucky Advanced Manufacturing Partnership for Enhanced Robotics and Structures


Ioannis Zisis (Florida International University)

Phase I I/UCRC at Florida International University: Center for Wind Hazard and Infrastructure Performance (WHIP)


Arindam Chowdhury (Florida International University)

MRI: Acquisition of a Three Component Particle-Image Velocimetry System to Enable Fundamental Research in Wind Engineering and Fluid Mechanics


Alice Alipour

Collaborative Research: Rethinking the Role of Building Envelopes with Smart Morphing Facades


Dorothy Reed (University of Washington)

Collaborative Research: Hybrid Experimental-Numerical Methodology and Field Calibration for Characterization of Peak Wind Effects on Low-Rise Buildings and Their Appurtenances


Dorothy Reed (University of Washington)

Collaborative Research: Hybrid Experimental-Numerical Methodology and Field Calibration for Characterization of Peak Wind Effects on Low-Rise Buildings and Their Appurtenances


Benjamin Strom

SBIR Phase I: Lowering Wind Power Costs Through Robist Vertical-Axis Turbines


Abdollah Shafieezadeh (Ohio State University)

Collaborative Research: Downburst Fragility Characterization of Transmission Line Systems Using Experimental and Validated Stochastic /Numerical Simulations


Amal Elawady (Florida International University)

Collaborative Research: Downburst Fragility Characterization of Transmission Line Systems Using Experimental and Validated Stochastic Numerical Simulations


Nigel Kaye (Clemson University)

Understanding Particle Scale Motion Initiation Physics for Loose-laid Building Rooftop Aggregates in Severe Windstorms


Jorge Cueto (Smart Walls Construction LLC)

SBIR Phase II: Telescopic Structural Flood Walls


Victor Maldonado (University of Texas at San Antonio)

CAREER: Control of Vortex Breakdown in High-Reynolds Number Rotor Flows with Secondary Vortex Structures


Alice Alipour (Iowa State University)

CAREER: Resiliency of Electric Power Networks under Wind Loads and Aging Effects through Risk-Informed Design and Assessment Strategies


Catherine Gorle (Stanford University)

CAREER: Quantifying Wind Hazards on Buildings in Urban Environments

1727401 (CMMI)

Chris Letchford (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute)

Model to Full-Scale Validation of Peak Pressure Mechanisms in Buildings that Cause Cladding Failures and Windstorm Damage


Shirley Dyke

Research Coordination Network in Hybrid Simulation for Multi-hazard Engineering

1638336 (CRISP-Collaborative)

Landolf Rhode (University of Miami)

A Human-Centered Computational Framework for Urban and Community Design of Resilient Coastal Cities

1635569 (CMMI)

Abdollah Shafieezadeh (Ohio State University)

Experimentally Validated Stochastic Numerical Framework to Generate Multi-Dimensional Fragilities for Hurricane Resilience Enhancement of Transmission Systems


Catherine Gorle

Quantifying Uncertainties in Computational Fluid Dynamics Predictions for Wind Loads on Buildings

1635378 (CMMI)

Youngjib Ham (Florida International University)

Uncovering Potential Risks of Wind-induced Cascading Damages to Construction Projects and Neighboring Communities


Liang Chung Lo (Drexel University)

Variability of Wind Effects on Natural Ventilation and Pollutant Transport in Buildings

1541142 (I-Corps)

Arindam Chowdhury (Florida International University)

Innovative Hurricane Damage Mitigation Systems


Arif Sarwat

CRISP Type 2: Collaborative Research: Towards Resilient Smart Cities


Teng Wu

Structural Response in Transient Winds of Hurricanes and Downbursts


Yahya Modarres-Sadeghi

Collaborative Research: Active Control of Nonlinear Flow-Indunced Instability of Wind Turbine Blades under Stochastic Pertubations

1455709 (CMMI)

Guirong (Grace) Yan (Missouri University of Science and Technology)

Damage and Instability Detection of Civil Large-scale Space Structures under Operational and Multi-hazard Environments based on Change in Macro-geometrical Patterns/Shapes

1443999 (EARS)

Kemal Akkaya (Florida International University)

Pervasive Spectrum Sharing for Public Safety Communications

1234004 (Collaborative)

Steve Cai (Louisiana State University)

Progressive Failure Studies of Residential Houses towards Performance Based Hurricane Engineering

1151003 (Career)

Arindam Chowdhury (Florida International University)

Full-Scale Simulation of Peak Responses to Reduce Hurricane Damage to Low Buildings and Use of Related Research to Develop Hurricane-Engineering Expertise

Experimental Protocols

The Wall of Wind Experimental Facility allows NHERI users to generate new and highly specific knowledge on wind loading, wind damage, and rain intrusion mechanisms. The goal is to improve design practices and create more wind-resilient and sustainable communities. The standard experimental protocols and specifications for EF-enabled user projects outline the scope, objectives, test specimen design, scaling (length, velocity and time scales), instrumentation, wind parameters, rain parameters (if applicable), test duration, data sampling rate, and safety procedures.

Physical Measurement Test Protocol

Pertains to obtaining quantitative aerodynamic and aeroelastic data before any failure occurs. Typically, valuable information is collected at lower wind speeds, where the risk of damaging the test model and/or instrumentation is lower. The protocol describes terrain roughness, wind speed increments, test duration, range of wind directions, time intervals between runs, and other test-specific parameters. The protocol is complemented by the available Standard Operating Protocols (SOP) for each instrument measuring wind-induced effects.

Failure Mode Test Protocol

Pertains to holistic system-level testing up to failure. Wind speed is incrementally increased to the maximum possible value to study failure modes, if failure occurs. The instrumentation applicable to this type of experiment is less comprehensive and is mainly focused on vibration measurements. In most of the cases, the instrumentation should be removed when imminent failure is observed or while testing at the highest wind speeds. The protocol describes general parameters (as in Physical Measurement Test Protocol) and delineates procedures for video recording of damage initiation, progressive damage propagation, failure modes, and rainwater intrusion mechanisms.

Wind-Driven Rain Test Protocol

Describes specimen preparation and procedures for tests under wind-driven rain. Nozzle types, spacing, and arrangement are specified for achieving target rain drop size distribution and rain intensity. Moisture sensors and rain collection systems and their locations in test models to detect and measure quantity and pattern of water intrusion are also specified.