Vortex particle-mesh simulations of vertical axis wind turbine flows: from the airfoil performance to the very far wake
- 1Institute of Mechanics, Materials and Civil Engineering, Université catholique de Louvain, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
- 2Wake Prediction Technologies (WaPT), Rue Louis de Geer 6, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium
Abstract. A vortex particle-mesh (VPM) method with immersed lifting lines has been developed and validated. Based on the vorticity–velocity formulation of the Navier–Stokes equations, it combines the advantages of a particle method and of a mesh-based approach. The immersed lifting lines handle the creation of vorticity from the blade elements and its early development. Large-eddy simulation (LES) of vertical axis wind turbine (VAWT) flows is performed. The complex wake development is captured in detail and over up to 15 diameters downstream: from the blades to the near-wake coherent vortices and then through the transitional ones to the fully developed turbulent far wake (beyond 10 rotor diameters). The statistics and topology of the mean flow are studied. The computational sizes also allow insights into the detailed unsteady vortex dynamics and topological flow features, such as a recirculation region influenced by the tip speed ratio and the rotor geometry.