The currently geometric and aerodynamic characteristics for wind turbine airfoils with the medium thickness are studied to pursue maximum aerodynamic performance, while the interaction between blade stiffness and aerodynamic performance is neglected. Combining the airfoil functional integration theory and the mathematical model of the blade cross-section stiffness matrix, an integrated design method of aerodynamic performance and structural stiffness characteristics for the medium thickness airfoils is presented. The aerodynamic and structural comparison of the optimized WQ-A300 airfoil, WQ-B300 airfoil, and the classic DU97-W-300 airfoil were analyzed. The results show that the aerodynamic performance of the WQ-A300 and WQ-B300 airfoils are better than that of the DU97-W-300 airfoil. Though the aerodynamic performance of the WQ-B300 airfoil is slightly reduced compared to the WQ-A300 airfoil, its blade cross-sectional stiffness properties are improved as the flapwise and edgewise stiffness are increased by 6.2% and 8.4%, respectively. This study verifies the feasibility for the novel design method. Moreover, it also provides a good design idea for the wind turbine airfoils and blade structural properties with medium or large thickness.
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