Turbines are critical parts in hydropower facilities, and the cross-flow turbine is one of the widely applied turbine designs in small- and micro-hydro facilities. Cross-flow turbines are relatively simple, flexible and less expensive, compared to other conventional hydro-turbines. However, the power generation efficiency of cross-flow turbines is not yet well optimized compared to conventional hydro-turbines. In this article, a Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)-driven design optimization approach is applied to one of the critical parts of the turbine, the valve. The valve controls the fluid flow, as well as determines the velocity and pressure magnitudes of the fluid jet leaving the nozzle region in the turbine. The Non-Uniform Rational B-Spline (NURBS) function is employed to generate construction points for the valve profile curve. Control points from the function that are highly sensitive to the output power are selected as optimization parameters, leading to the generation of construction points. Metamodel-assisted and metaheuristic optimization tools are used in the optimization. Optimized turbine designs from both optimization methods outperformed the original design with regard to performance of the turbine. Moreover, the metamodel-assisted optimization approach reduced the computational cost, compared to its counterpart.
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