Three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (3D-CFD) was performed to simulate the flow field around an aluminum circular-blade butterfly wind turbine, which is a vertical-axis-type turbine with four circular blades and a diameter of 2.06 m. Under the assumption of a loss factor of 0.8 due to a generator and an AC–DC converter, the CFD results agreed with the experimental results. Although tip vortices were observed at the top and bottom portions of the blades, the vorticity intensity was weaker than that of the straight-blade rotor case. In addition, the cross-sectional shape of the tip vortices seemed to be elliptical for circular blades rather than circular as for straight blades. As the tip speed ratio was less than 2, vortices arising from dynamic stall at maximum-radius portions of blades were observed at the downwind half-cycle as well as the upwind half-cycle. A feature of the vortices shed from a circular blade at the downwind half-cycle was the looped shape.

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