Improved Stall Delay Model for HAWT Performance Predictions using 3D Navier-Stokes Solver and Actuator Disk Method

Document Type : Regular Article


1 Laboratory of Mechanical Engineering and Development (LGMD), National Polytechnic School -ENP-, P.B. 182 El-Harrach, Algiers, 16200, Algeria

2 Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Sherbrooke, 2500 University Boulevard, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada


The Actuator Disk Method (ADM), in its analytical formulation or combined with Navier-Stokes equations, is widely used for design and/or for aerodynamic analysis of Horizontal Axis Wind Turbines (HAWT). This method has demonstrated its capabilities for performance predictions of HAWT rotors for limited range of wind speeds with lower angles of attack values, i.e. attached flow conditions. However, for typical wind speeds that rotor encounters, under higher angles of attack i.e. stall conditions, such a method cannot describe accurately the flow characteristics around rotor-blades due to severe flow separations coupled with the effects of blades rotation as well as the radial flow over the blades. In this paper, original correction approaches have been proposed for the existing stall delay models to take into account both the blade rotation and the radial flow effects over the rotor blades. For this purpose, the ADM combined with 3D- NavierStokes equations formulation using Large Eddy Simulations (LES) model has been considered to describe the incompressible turbulent flow field around HAWT rotor blades. The resulting mathematical model has been solved using a 3D in-house subroutine developed with OpenFOAM code. The proposed numerical method has been validated against the well recognized reference measurements obtained using the New MEXICO and the NREL Phase VI experimental wind turbines. In comparison with existing stall delay models, the proposed correction
approaches, especially the radial flow approach, have shown noticeable enhancements on performance predictions of HAWT rotors compared to the experimental measurements. It has been found very low discrepancies to the experimental torque and thrust values, up to 1% and 10% have been recorded respectively.


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