Most vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs) need arms connecting the blades with the rotational axis. The arms increase the power loss of VAWTs; however, the distribution between the pressure and friction influences and their degrees of influence have not yet been investigated in detail in past research. We applied computational fluid dynamics (CFD) targeting a small-sized straight-bladed VAWT to elucidate the effects of arms on turbine performance. In the analysis, three kinds of arms with different cross-sections (NACA 0018 airfoil, 18% rectangular, circular) with the same height were added to an armless rotor. The tangential forces and resistance torques caused by the added arms were recalculated by dividing the pressure and friction influences based on the surface pressure and friction distributions obtained by the CFD on an arm or a blade. The pressure-based tangential force of an arm, regardless of the cross-section, had a tendency to increase near the connection part between the arm and a blade. Though the value was small, the friction on the rectangular arm generated a driving force, whereas the friction on the other arms generated resistance forces. The pressure-based tangential force of a blade increased for a wide region around the connection part. The friction-based tangential force of a blade dropped around the connection part of every arm-equipped rotor. The arm resistance torque added to a VAWT by the existence of arms was larger than the added blade resistance torque in the cases of rectangular and circular arm rotors. Conversely, in the case of the airfoil arm rotor, the resistance torque added to blades became larger than that of arms.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Energy (miscellaneous)
- Control and Optimization
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering