Due to the rapid progress in high-performance computing and the availability of increasingly large computational resources, Navier–Stokes (NS) computational fluid dynamics (CFD) now offers a cost-effective, versatile, and accurate means to improve the understanding of the unsteady aerodynamics of Darrieus wind turbines and deliver more efficient designs. In particular, the possibility of determining a fully resolved flow field past the blades by means of CFD offers the opportunity to both further understand the physics underlying the turbine fluid dynamics and to use this knowledge to validate lower-order models, which can have a wider diffusion in the wind energy sector, particularly for industrial use, in the light of their lower computational burden. In this context, highly spatially and temporally refined time-dependent three-dimensional (3D) NS simulations were carried out using more than 16,000 processor cores per simulation on an IBM BG/Q cluster in order to investigate thoroughly the 3D unsteady aerodynamics of a single blade in Darrieus-like motion. Particular attention was paid to tip losses, dynamic stall, and blade/wake interaction. CFD results are compared with those obtained with an open-source code based on the lifting line free vortex wake model (LLFVW). At present, this approach is the most refined method among the “lower-fidelity” models, and as the wake is explicitly resolved in contrast to blade element momentum (BEM)-based methods, LLFVW analyses provide 3D flow solutions. Extended comparisons between the two approaches are presented and a critical analysis is carried out to identify the benefits and drawbacks of the two approaches.
Three-Dimensional Aerodynamic Analysis of a Darrieus Wind Turbine Blade Using Computational Fluid Dynamics and Lifting Line Theory
Contributed by the Turbomachinery Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received July 5, 2017; final manuscript received July 19, 2017; published online October 3, 2017. Editor: David Wisler.
Balduzzi, F., Marten, D., Bianchini, A., Drofelnik, J., Ferrari, L., Campobasso, M. S., Pechlivanoglou, G., Nayeri, C. N., Ferrara, G., and Paschereit, C. O. (October 3, 2017). "Three-Dimensional Aerodynamic Analysis of a Darrieus Wind Turbine Blade Using Computational Fluid Dynamics and Lifting Line Theory." ASME. J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power. February 2018; 140(2): 022602. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4037750
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