The scale of a wind turbine is getting larger with the development of wind energy recently. Therefore, the effect of the wind turbine blades deformation on its performances and lifespan has become obvious. In order to solve this research rapidly, a new elastic actuator line model (EALM) is proposed in this study, which is based on turbinesFoam in OpenFOAM (Open Source Field Operation and Manipulation, a free, open source computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software package released by the OpenFOAM Foundation, which was incorporated as a company limited by guarantee in England and Wales). The model combines the actuator line model (ALM) and a beam solver, which is used in the wind turbine blade design. The aeroelastic performances of the NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) 5 MW wind turbine like power, thrust, and blade tip displacement are investigated. These results are compared with some research to prove the new model. Additionally, the influence caused by blade deflections on the aerodynamic performance is discussed. It is demonstrated that the tower shadow effect becomes more obvious and causes the power and thrust to get a bit lower and unsteady. Finally, this variety is analyzed in the wake of upstream wind turbine and it is found that the influence on the performance and wake flow field of downstream wind turbine becomes more serious.
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