2D CFD Simulation Study on the Performance of Various NACA Airfoils
Keywords:CFD simulations, NACA airfoils, Wind turbine, Torque coefficient, power coefficient
The wind is an energy source that has the properties of a clean, free, and readily available energy source. However, the efficiency of the existing rotors used to harness wind power is still not satisfactory. Thus, in this current study, the development and aerodynamic performance investigation of ten NACA airfoils comprising of five symmetrical and five non-symmetrical airfoils have been analyzed through the computational fluids dynamic (CFD) simulation approach. The main motive of this study was to investigate the aerodynamic performance of NACA airfoils to be used on a vertical axis wind turbine (VAWT), which will assist in further understanding the physics of the interaction between airflow and the wind turbine blades. The simulation was performed using two-dimensional computational models based on an unsteady state K-omega Shear Stress Transport (SST) turbulence model. This study covers a parametric study based on the variations of tip-speed ratios and constant wind velocity. The aerodynamic performances are evaluated in terms of torque, torque coefficient, and also power coefficient. The performance of NACA0018 was found to be the best among the other airfoils with a power coefficient of 0.3. NACA0010 displayed the lowest power coefficient among the other airfoils but had a more extensive operating range compared to the other airfoils. However, for non-symmetrical NACA airfoils, NACA2421 scored the highest power coefficient, followed by NACA4412. It was also found that most of the non-symmetrical NACA airfoils can operate at a higher range of tip-speed ratios compared to the symmetrical NACA airfoils.
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