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Aerodynamic Optimization of Airfoil Profiles for Small Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines

Center of Flow Simulation (CFS), Department of Mechanical and Process Engineering, Düsseldorf University of Applied Sciences, Münsterstr. 156, D-40476 Germany
Institute of Thermal Power Engineering, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Cracow University of Technology, Al. Jana Pawła II 37, 31-864 Kraków, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Computation 2018, 6(2), 34;
Received: 2 March 2018 / Revised: 19 April 2018 / Accepted: 21 April 2018 / Published: 25 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Computational Methods in Wind Engineering)
PDF [3915 KB, uploaded 3 May 2018]


The purpose of this study is the development of an automated two-dimensional airfoil shape optimization procedure for small horizontal axis wind turbines (HAWT), with an emphasis on high thrust and aerodynamically stable performance. The procedure combines the Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis with the Response Surface Methodology (RSM), the Biobjective Mesh Adaptive Direct Search (BiMADS) optimization algorithm and an automatic geometry and mesh generation tool. In CFD analysis, a Reynolds Averaged Numerical Simulation (RANS) is applied in combination with a two-equation turbulence model. For describing the system behaviour under alternating wind conditions, a number of CFD 2D-RANS-Simulations with varying Reynolds numbers and wind angles are performed. The number of cases is reduced by the use of RSM. In the analysis, an emphasis is placed upon the role of the blade-to-blade interaction. The average and the standard deviation of the thrust are optimized by a derivative-free optimization algorithm to define a Pareto optimal set, using the BiMADS algorithm. The results show that improvements in the performance can be achieved by modifications of the blade shape and the present procedure can be used as an effective tool for blade shape optimization. View Full-Text
Keywords: CFD; RSM; RANS; BiMADS; HAWT; wind turbine; airfoil; aerodynamics; optimization CFD; RSM; RANS; BiMADS; HAWT; wind turbine; airfoil; aerodynamics; optimization

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Benim, A.C.; Diederich, M.; Pfeiffelmann, B. Aerodynamic Optimization of Airfoil Profiles for Small Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines. Computation 2018, 6, 34.

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