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Numerical Simulation of a Farm of Vertical Axis Marine Current Turbines

[+] Author Affiliations
Anders Goude, Olov Ågren

Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden

Paper No. OMAE2010-20160, pp. 335-344; 10 pages
  • ASME 2010 29th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering
  • 29th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering: Volume 3
  • Shanghai, China, June 6–11, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4911-8 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3873-0
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME


For commercial applications of marine current turbines, it can be useful to build several turbines close to each other in a farm, similar to wind turbine parks. To create a good farm configuration, the turbines’ mutual interaction needs to be studied. Here, to obtain detailed information, several turbines were simulated together using a 2D vortex method. To limit the computational cost, the vortex method was combined with known profile section data for the blades. First, a single turbine was compared against two turbines in close proximity. The two turbines were tested both with equal and opposite rotational direction, and the two blade pitch angles 0 and 3 degrees were tested. For both a single turbine and the two turbine case, a 3 degree pitch angle gave higher power coefficients than 0 degrees. The differences between 3 and 0 degrees were more significant for the single turbine. In all cases, the two turbine system had higher power coefficient per turbine than the single turbine. A five turbine park was simulated with three different combinations, one with all turbines on a row, and two with a zigzag pattern, where the difference was that the last simulation had larger turbines than the other two. For 0 degrees incident flow angle, the turbines on the row obtained the highest power coefficient, while the larger turbines in zigzag pattern obtained higher total power. The case with the turbines on the row was most insensitive to changes in flow direction, and for a 30 degree change, the row produced the highest total power as well. By locating the turbines inside a channel, all turbines obtained higher power coefficients, and the increase was largest for the large turbines, which blocked the channel to a larger extent.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME



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