Design & optimization of a small wind turbine blade for operation at low wind speed
Article publication date: 23 February 2015
A small wind turbine blade was designed and optimized in this research paper. The blade plays an important role, because it is the most important part of the energy absorption system. Consequently, the blade has to be designed carefully to enable to absorb energy with its greatest efficiency. The main objective of this paper is to optimized blade number and selection of tip speed ratio corresponding to the solidity. The power performance of small horizontal axis wind turbines was simulated in detail using blade element momentum methods (BEM). In this paper for wind blade design various factors such as tip loss, hub loss, drag coefficient, and wake were considered. The design process includes the selection of the wind turbine type and the determination of the blade airfoil, twist angle distribution along the radius, and chord length distribution along the radius. A parametric study that will determine if the optimized values of blade twist angle and chord length create the most efficient blade geometry. The 3-bladed, 5-bladed and 7-bladed rotor achieved maximum values of Cp 0.46, 0.5 and 0.48 at the tip speed ratio 7, 5 and 4 respectively. It was observed that using BEM theory, maximum Cp varied with strongly solidity and weakly with the blade number. The studies showed that the power coefficient increases upto blade number B = 5, while the blade number if increased above 5 then the power coefficient decreases at operating pitch angle equal to 3°. Highest Cp would have solidity between 4% to 6% for number of blade 3 and design point tip speed ratio of about "7". Highest Cp would have solidity ranging from 5% to 10% for number of blade 5 and 7 and design point tip speed ratio of about 5 and 4 respectively.
Chaudhary, M.K. and Roy, A. (2015), "Design & optimization of a small wind turbine blade for operation at low wind speed", World Journal of Engineering, Vol. 12 No. 1, pp. 83-94. https://doi.org/10.1260/1708-5218.104.22.168
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