Improvements of cut-in Speed and Aerodynamic Performance of Wind Turbine Blades

Project: Research

Project Details


Wind energy technology is in a booming era as a result of increasing awareness, environmental pollution, and fuel prices. Wind is a clean source of energy and combat the dependency on fossil fuels and addressing energy crisis and environmental pollution. Wind turbines convert the wind energy into electricity through aerodynamically designed blades. Wind turbines usually perform poor at low wind speed due to laminar flow separation. Flow separation on airfoils is particularly prevalent at low Reynolds number (Re) due to the interaction of the laminar boundary layer on the suction surface with an adverse pressure gradient. The momentum contained in the boundary layer is often unable to withstand the forces imposed by the adverse pressure gradient, which causes the flow to separate near the leading edge. Wind turbines are expected to generate power over a wide range of wind speed. For better performance of wind turbines over a wide range of wind speed, the cut-in-speed of the wind turbines should be reduced through proper designing of blades. The harvested wind energy is proportional to the third power of the wind speed. Therefore, decreasing the cut-in speed will significantly increase the collected energy. However, it would still enable energy extraction during periods of low wind speed, and may enable wind turbine installation at sites that are currently considered not feasible for wind energy extraction due to low average wind speed. The active control method using synthetic jet to suppress the flow separation on airfoil can be employed in decreasing the cut-in speed, increasing the startup torque and thus improving the overall performance of the wind turbine. The proposed work has potential benefits for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, such as paving the way for green energy, and a reduction in Kingdoms dependency on fossil fuels.
Effective start/end date11/04/1610/04/18


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