The swimming pool area at Club La Santa, Lanzarote, is exposed to the wind. Wind tunnel tests simulate the wind conditions for the existing layout and investigate possible measures for improving the wind environment.

Club La Santa at Lanzarote is known for its unique sports facilities attracting top athletes from around the world. In order to create the best possible training ground for their customers, the management team of Club La Santa is constantly looking for ways to improve the facilities.

The wind from the Atlantic Ocean is a natural part of the environment on the island of Lanzarote. Despite buildings surrounding Club La Santa’s outdoor swimming pool, the wind still manages to find its way across the area, creating unpleasant wind conditions. But where does the wind originate from, and what measures can be taken to improve the wind comfort? To help answering these questions, Club La Santa asked FORCE Technology’s wind experts to investigate the wind environment at their outdoor swimming pool area.

Club La Santa pool area

Visualising the wind

To identify what causes the problems, a model of the pool facilities and the surrounding buildings was built in a 1:100 scale and tested in our wind tunnel. The advantage of using a model is that it verifies the problem that has been observed on site.

Erosion material was sprinkled over the model to create a visual picture of the wind effect. In the below picture of the model, the dark areas illustrate where the wind is strongest, indicating that one building in particular is channeling the wind across the pool area.

An iterative search for solutions

At a creative workshop with the management team from Club La Santa and our wind experts, various scenarios to limit the wind effect were tried out on the scale model. The workshop was an iterative process were everyone chipped in with ideas so that numerous solutions and combinations of solutions could be tested.

The wind played tricks with some of the tested solutions. When the wind effect was reduced in one place, new wind problems occurred in other places around the pool. At the end of the creative workshop, three of the most appropriate measures to solve the problem were selected.

“It was great for us to be present at the creative workshop because we could see with our own eyes the wind effect of each of the suggested solutions. This gives us a much better outset for evaluating and deciding on solutions that will work for us and our athletes at Club La Santa,” says Frederik Sohns, Managing Director of Club La Santa.

Technical investigations document the real effect

Afterwards, technical documentation tests were conducted to determine the actual effect of the selected measures to improve the local wind environment.

The effect of the selected measures was documented by colour maps based on erosion tests. The colour maps are excellent for visualising the wind effect of the solutions, and they are a great decision-making tool for the management team.

”The wind tunnel tests made us aware that our wind challenge is much more complex than anticipated. I can highly recommend others that experience similar wind problems to have a creative workshop. At best, have the workshop before commencing the construction work, so you have control over the wind effect beforehand,” explains Frederik Sohns.

Direct involvement leads to better decisions

Based on the technical report and findings in the creative workshop, the management of Club La Santa can decide on the appropriate measures to improve the wind conditions at the swimming pool area so that their facilities remain an attractive place for athletes to train.

”From the tests, we can see that some solutions work better than others. We might not be able to eliminate the wind problem completely, but we can limit it significantly, and that is very important for us. We will try out different measures to see the effect. At a later point, we might return and have FORCE Technology test other solutions around our pool area,” says Frederik Sohns.

A model of the pool facilities and the surrounding buildings was built in a 1:100 scale and tested in our wind tunnel.
Model of Club La Santa’s pool facilities (scale 1:100). The dark areas illustrate where the wind is strongest.