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Research Papers: Alternative Energy Sources

Performance Studies on a Wind Turbine Blade Section for Low Wind Speeds With a Gurney Flap

[+] Author and Article Information
M. Rafiuddin Ahmed

Life Member ASME
Division of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of the South Pacific,
Suva, Fiji
e-mails: ahmed_r@usp.ac.fj; ahmedm1@asme.org

Epeli Nabolaniwaqa

Division of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of the South Pacific,
Suva, Fiji
e-mail: nabolaniwaqaepeli@gmail.com

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Energy Resources Technology. Manuscript received April 9, 2018; final manuscript received April 28, 2019; published online May 20, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Christopher Niezrecki.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 141(11), 111202 (May 20, 2019) (9 pages) Paper No: JERT-18-1259; doi: 10.1115/1.4043708 History: Received April 09, 2018; Accepted April 29, 2019

The flow characteristics and the lift and drag behavior of a thick trailing-edged airfoil that was provided with fixed trailing-edge flaps (Gurney flaps) of 1–5% height right at the back of the airfoil were studied both experimentally and numerically at different low Reynolds numbers (Re) and angles of attack for possible applications in wind turbines suitable for the wind speeds of 4–6 m/s. The flap considerably improves the suction on the upper surface of the airfoil resulting in a higher lift coefficient. The drag coefficient also increased; however, the increase was less compared with the increase in the lift coefficient, resulting in a higher lift-to-drag ratio in the angles of attack of interest. The results show that trailing-edge flaps can improve the performance of blades designed for low wind speeds and can be directly applied to small wind turbines that are increasingly being used in remote places or in smaller countries.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

An image of the AF300 airfoil showing the pressure taps on the upper and lower surfaces (dimensions in mm)

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Fig. 2

Geometry of the airfoil with GF and the meshing close to the airfoil

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Fig. 3

Pressure distribution on the AF300 airfoil surface for α = 0 deg and Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 4

Pressure distribution on the airfoil surface for α = 4 deg and Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 5

Pressure distribution on the airfoil surface for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 6

Iso-pressure contours around the airfoil with 3% GF for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000

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Fig. 7

The streamlines around the airfoil with 3% GF for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000

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Fig. 8

Pressure distribution on the airfoil surface for α = 12 deg and Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 9

The turbulent kinetic energy around the airfoil without GF for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000

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Fig. 10

Change in the coefficient of lift at different angles of attack at Re = 158,000 for different GF heights compared with no GF

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Fig. 11

Coefficient of drag at different angles of attack at Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 12

Lift-to-drag ratio at different angles of attack at Re = 158,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 13

Pressure distribution on the AF300 airfoil surface for α = 0 deg and Re = 250,000 for different GF heights and without GF

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Fig. 14

Effect of turbulence intensity on the pressure distribution on the airfoil without GF for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000

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Fig. 15

The turbulent kinetic energy around the airfoil without GF for α = 8 deg, Re = 158,000, and Tu = 10%

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Fig. 16

Effect of turbulence intensity on the pressure distribution on the airfoil with 3% GF for α = 8 deg and Re = 158,000

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