Document Type: Research Article
Mechanical Engineering Department, Suez Canal University, 51422, Egypt
Since the renewable resources of energy have become extremely important, especially wind energy, scientists have begun to modify the design of the wind turbine components, mainly rotor blades. Aerodynamic design considered a major research field related to power production of a small horizontal wind turbine, especially in low wind speed locations. This study displays an approach to the selection of airfoil and blade design utilized in small horizontal wind turbines with low cut-in speed and with no gear box. Modeling of the flow depends on Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and theory of Blade Element Momentum (BEM) methodologies. QBlade used (BEM) for wind turbine simulation and integrated with XFOIL for airfoils design to ensure the requested characteristics for wind turbine performance. MATLAB is used to calculate the final design parameters to be modeled in SOLIDWORK. The flow dynamics are explored with the aid of ANSYS Fluent 16. The application of specially designed blades grants start up at lower wind speeds. The designed blade is fabricated from polyurethane foam. Experimental study confirmed that, at low average wind velocity (4m/s), the fabricated small-scale horizontal wind turbines are considered to be a positive way to supply electricity with an average power rate of 9watt and efficiency of 8%.