Numerical study of airfoil thickness effects on the performance of J-shaped straight blade vertical axis wind turbine

  • Zamani, Mahdi (Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad) ;
  • Maghrebi, Mohammad Javad (Department of Mechanical Engineering, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad) ;
  • Moshizi, Sajad A. (Sun-Air Research Institute, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad)
  • Received : 2015.08.16
  • Accepted : 2016.03.24
  • Published : 2016.05.25


Providing high starting torque and efficiency simultaneously is a significant challenge for vertical axis wind turbines (VAWTs). In this paper, a new approach is studied in order to modify VAWTs performance and cogging torque. In this approach, J-shaped profiles are exploited in the structure of blades by means of eliminating the pressure side of airfoil from the maximum thickness toward the trailing edge. This new profile is a new type of VAWT airfoil using the lift and drag forces, thereby yielding a better performance at low TSRs. To simulate the fluid flow of the VAWT along with J-shaped profiles originated from NACA0018 and NACA0030, a two-dimensional computational analysis is conducted. The Reynolds Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations are closed using the two-equation Shear Stress Transport (SST) turbulence model. The main objective of the study is to investigate the effects of J-shaped straight blade thickness on the performance characteristics of VAWT. The results obtained indicate that opting for the higher thickness in J-shaped profiles for the blade sections leads the performance and cogging torque of VAWT to enhance dramatically.


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