Full Content is available to subscribers

Subscribe/Learn More  >

A Critical Analysis on Low-Order Simulation Models for Darrieus VAWTs: How Much Do They Pertain to the Real Flow?

[+] Author Affiliations
Alessandro Bianchini, Francesco Balduzzi, Giovanni Ferrara

Università degli Studi di Firenze, Firenze, Italy

Giacomo Persico, Vincenzo Dossena

Politecnico di Milano, Milano, Italy

Lorenzo Ferrari

Università di Pisa, Pisa, Italy

Paper No. GT2018-76623, pp. V009T48A013; 13 pages
  • ASME Turbo Expo 2018: Turbomachinery Technical Conference and Exposition
  • Volume 9: Oil and Gas Applications; Supercritical CO2 Power Cycles; Wind Energy
  • Oslo, Norway, June 11–15, 2018
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5118-0
  • Copyright © 2018 by ASME


To improve the efficiency of Darrieus wind turbines, which still lacks from that of horizontal-axis rotors, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) techniques are now extensively applied, since they only provide a detailed and comprehensive flow representation. Their computational cost makes them, however, still prohibitive for routine application in the industrial context, which still makes large use of low-order simulation models like the Blade Element Momentum (BEM) theory. These models have been shown to provide relatively accurate estimations of the overall turbine performance; conversely, the description of the flow field suffers from the strong approximations introduced in the modelling of the flow physics.

In the present study, the effectiveness of the simplified BEM approach was critically benchmarked against a comprehensive description of the flow field past the rotating blades coming from the combination of a two-dimensional unsteady CFD model and experimental wind tunnel tests; for both data sets, the overall performance and the wake characteristics on the mid plane of a small-scale H-shaped Darrieus turbine were available. Upon examination of the flow field, the validity of the ubiquitous use of induction factors is discussed, together with the resulting velocity profiles upstream and downstream the rotor. Particular attention is paid on the actual flow conditions (i.e. incidence angle and relative speed) experienced by the airfoils in motion at different azimuthal angles, for which a new procedure for the post-processing of CFD data is here proposed. Based on this model, the actual lift and drag coefficients produced by the airfoils in motion are analyzed and discussed, with particular focus on dynamic stall. The analysis highlights the main critical issues and flaws of the low-order BEM approach, but also sheds new light on the physical reasons why the overall performance prediction of these models is often acceptable for a first-design analysis.

Copyright © 2018 by ASME



Interactive Graphics


Country-Specific Mortality and Growth Failure in Infancy and Yound Children and Association With Material Stature

Use interactive graphics and maps to view and sort country-specific infant and early dhildhood mortality and growth failure data and their association with maternal

Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).

Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In