In desert environment, wind turbines blades undergo severe erosion process caused by air-borne sand particles. The erosion damage on blade surface is sensitive to particles velocity, mass flux and impingement angle. The objective of the present work is to get insight into the underlying mechanics of damage evolution by erodent particles in coated Glass Fiber Reinforced Polymer (GFRP) at different impingement angles within the framework of Discrete Element Method and Finite Element (DEM-FE). This paper presents a novel experimental technique to measure sand particles velocity which is then compared to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations based on Eulerian-Eulerian multiphase flow model. The computed sand solid phase velocity and mass flux were used into the DEM-FE analysis to investigate the erosion damage on the coated GFRP surface at multiple impingement angles. Primary findings of CFD show strong dependence between sand particles velocity and its volume fraction. DEM-FE results showed that, the evolution of eroded surface is strongly dependent on the particles impingement angle; in normal impact, the maximum material removal occurs initially, and in oblique impact there is a gradual removal of material along the erosion process.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.