Research Papers

A Simplified Morphing Blade for Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines

[+] Author and Article Information
Weijun Wang

e-mail: Weijun.Wang@irccyn.ec-nantes.fr

Stéphane Caro

e-mail: Stephane.Caro@irccyn.ec-nantes.fr

Fouad Bennis

e-mail: fouad.bennis@irccyn.ec-nantes.fr
Institut de Recherche en Communications,
et Cybernétique de Nantes,
1 rue de la Noë,
Nantes 44321, France

Oscar Roberto Salinas Mejia

Instituto Tecnologico y,
de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey,
Chihuahua, Ch., Mexico
e-mail: oscar_roberto_salinas@hotmail.com

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING. Manuscript received August 12, 2012; final manuscript received October 28, 2013; published online November 26, 2013. Assoc. Editor: Yves Gagnon.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 136(1), 011018 (Nov 26, 2013) (8 pages) Paper No: SOL-12-1199; doi: 10.1115/1.4025970 History: Received August 12, 2012; Revised October 28, 2013

The aim of designing wind turbine blades is to improve the power capture ability. Since rotor control technology is currently limited to controlling rotational speed and blade pitch, an increasing concern has been given to morphing blades. In this paper, a simplified morphing blade is introduced, which has a linear twist distribution along the span and a shape that can be controlled by adjusting the twist of the blade's root and tip. To evaluate the performance of wind turbine blades, a numerical code based on the blade element momentum theory is developed and validated. The blade of the NREL Phase VI wind turbine is taken as a reference blade and has a fixed pitch. The optimization problems associated with the control of the morphing blade and a blade with pitch control are formulated. The optimal results show that the morphing blade gives better results than the blade with pitch control in terms of produced power. Under the assumption that at a given site, the annual average wind speed is known and the wind speed follows a Rayleigh distribution, the annual energy production of wind turbines was evaluated for three types of blade, namely, morphing blade, blade with pitch control and fixed pitch blade. For an annual average wind speed varying between 5 m/s and 15 m/s, it turns out that the annual energy production of the wind turbine containing morphing blades is 24.5% to 69.7% higher than the annual energy production of the wind turbine containing pitch fixed blades. Likewise, the annual energy production of the wind turbine containing blades with pitch control is 22.7% to 66.9% higher than the annual energy production of the wind turbine containing pitch fixed blades.

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Fig. 1

Schematic of momentum theory for wind turbines

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Fig. 2

Velocities and forces on a blade element

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Fig. 3

Calculation flowchart for induction factors

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Fig. 4

CD and CL as a function of α for S809 airfoil

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Fig. 5

Twist and chord distributions of Phase VI WT blades

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Fig. 6

Comparison between simulated and experimental results

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Fig. 7

Produced power as a function of wind speed

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Fig. 8

Schematic of a blade with pitch control

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Fig. 9

Schematic of a morphing blade with active control

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Fig. 10

Schematic of a simplified morphing blade

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Fig. 11

Section of a conventional blade showing upper and lower shells and webs

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Fig. 12

Optimal performance of the MB and BPC at different wind speeds

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Fig. 13

Twist angle as a function of the blade radius for v = 5 m/s, v = 10 m/s, and v = 15 m/s

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Fig. 14

Rayleigh distributions of the wind speed for three average wind speeds: v¯ = 5 m/s,v¯ = 10 m/s, and v¯ = 15 m/s

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Fig. 15

AEP of the wind turbines as a function of the average wind speed




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