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Research Papers

The Actuator Surface Model: A New Navier–Stokes Based Model for Rotor Computations

[+] Author and Article Information
Wen Zhong Shen

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Technical University of Denmark, Building 403, 2800 Lyngby, Denmarkshen@mek.dtu.dk

Jian Hui Zhang, Jens Nørkær Sørensen

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Technical University of Denmark, Building 403, 2800 Lyngby, Denmark

J. Sol. Energy Eng 131(1), 011002 (Jan 06, 2009) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3027502 History: Received July 05, 2007; Revised July 06, 2008; Published January 06, 2009

This paper presents a new numerical technique for simulating two-dimensional wind turbine flow. The method, denoted as the 2D actuator surface technique, consists of a two-dimensional Navier–Stokes solver in which the pressure distribution is represented by body forces that are distributed along the chord of the airfoils. The distribution of body force is determined from a set of predefined functions that depend on angle of attack and airfoil shape. The predefined functions are curve fitted using pressure distributions obtained either from viscous-inviscid interactive codes or from full Navier–Stokes simulations. The actuator surface technique is evaluated by computing the two-dimensional flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and an angle of attack of 10deg and by comparing the computed streamlines with the results from a traditional Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes computation. In the last part, the actuator surface technique is applied to compute the flow past a two-bladed vertical axis wind turbine equipped with NACA 0012 airfoils. Comparisons with experimental data show an encouraging performance of the method.

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Copyright © 2009 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Distribution of pressure coefficient Cp for flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and angle of attack of 15deg (a) and 40deg (b)

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Figure 2

Coefficients of difference pressure CΔp computed using ELLIPSYS2D and XFOIL for the flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and different angles of attack (a) 7deg, (b) 15deg, (c) 20deg, (d) 30deg, (e) 40deg, and (f) 70deg

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Figure 3

Reproduction of CΔp using empirical functions for flows past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and angles of attack of (a) 5deg, (b) 13deg, (c) 20deg, (d) 45deg, and (e) 70deg

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Figure 4

Zoomed Cartesian mesh used for actuator surface computations of flows past an airfoil

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Figure 5

Zoomed mesh used for RANS computations of flows past a NACA 0015 airfoil

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Figure 6

Streamline and pressure plot for flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and an angle of attack of 10deg with (a) RANS and (b) actuator surface model

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Figure 7

Pressure distribution along the contours 1 (a) and 2 (b) that are defined in Fig. 5 for flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at a Reynolds number of 106 and an angle of attack α=10deg

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Figure 8

Airfoil data of lift and drag coefficients obtained for flow past a NACA 0015 airfoil at Reynolds number of 160,000, from Refs. 24-25

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Figure 9

Vorticity plot of the flow past a vertical axis wind turbine at a tip-speed-ratio λ=2.5, computed by the actuator surface technique

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Figure 10

Particle tracers for flow past a vertical axis wind turbine at a tip-speed-ratio λ=2.5, computed by the actuator surface technique

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Figure 11

Tangential force coefficient for flow past a VAWT at a tip-speed ratio of 2.5

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Figure 12

Normal force coefficient for flow past a VAWT at a tip-speed ratio of 2.5

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Figure 13

Angle of attack on the airfoil in function of the azimuth position for flow past a VAWT at a tip-speed ratio of 2.5

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