Modelling tidal current turbine wakes using a coupled RANS-BEMT approach as a tool for analysing power capture of arrays of turbines

Turnock, S.R., Phillips, A.B., Banks, Joe and Nicholls-Lee, R.F. (2011) Modelling tidal current turbine wakes using a coupled RANS-BEMT approach as a tool for analysing power capture of arrays of turbines. Ocean Engineering, 38, (11-12), 1300-1307. (doi:10.1016/j.oceaneng.2011.05.018).


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The downstream evolution of the wake generated by a rotating tidal energy conversion device influences the performance of the device itself as well as the performance of any downstream device. An improved method is proposed for coupling a blade element momentum theory inner solution for a horizontal axis tidal turbine with an outer domain flow solved using a commercial finite volume computational Fluid Dynamics solver. A mesh sensitivity study is carried out and shows that for wake evolution of distance 10 diameters a high resolution mesh (>10M cells) is required. The importance of swirl is shown in retarding the wake spreading and that the inclusion of a suitable
turbulence intensity term is also required to capture the spread of the near wake. A final section demonstrates the use of such a technique for analysing the energy capture of an array of multiple turbines distributed over 1km2 of seabed. The use of staggered lateral position between longitudinal arrays demonstrates a potential for more effective power capture.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1016/j.oceaneng.2011.05.018
ISSNs: 0029-8018 (print)
0029-8018 (electronic)
Related URLs:
Keywords: CFD, tidal turbine array, power capture prediction, wake evoluiton, blade element momentum
Subjects: T Technology > TC Hydraulic engineering. Ocean engineering
V Naval Science > VM Naval architecture. Shipbuilding. Marine engineering
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Engineering Sciences > Fluid-Structure Interactions
National Oceanography Centre (NERC)
ePrint ID: 154885
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
9 December 2009Submitted
18 May 2011Accepted
1 July 2011Made publicly available
August 2011Published
Date Deposited: 26 May 2010 11:29
Last Modified: 20 May 2016 15:24

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