Numerical study on coupling effects among multiple Savonius turbines


X Sun, D Luo, D Huang, G Wu – Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy, October, 2012

Abstract

A Savonius rotor can be used as a wind or water current energy conversion device that produces electricity. In spite of their simple structure and assembly, Savonius turbines have less commercial appeal than other types of turbines due to their relatively low energy conversion efficiency. In order to increase the output power of a Savonius turbine, most studies have only focused on optimization of the rotor configuration or installation of ancillary equipment around the rotor. However, previous research has found that a beneficial interaction that existed between two parallel Savonius turbines can also augment the power output of each rotor if they are rotating side by side. This paper numerically examines the interactions among multiple Savonius turbines with the help of the commercial computational fluid dynamics software fluent and finds that these coupling effects can effectively increase the overall power output of a Savonius turbine farm, especially when Savonius turbines are arranged relatively close together. Numerical results also indicate that the separation distance and relative phase angle between the two adjacent Savonius rotors can greatly influence this positive interaction between them.

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