Vertical axis wind turbine efficiency improvement studies

Surya Tallavarjula, California, USA 13-15

For use in urban areas with changing wind direction and the need for less noise, vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs) are best suited. The Savonius Vertical Axis Wind Turbine is one such design, but has low efficiency. The purpose of this project is to explore design options to improve efficiency of the Savonius VAWT. If the drag force on the returning blade is reduced, the net torque on the VAWT and the angular speed will increase. Three concepts are studied and the performance coefficient-tip speed ratio characteristics are compared for my designs with the published data. Preliminary calculations show that the blocker plate concept provides the highest efficiency.

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