Computational Analysis of a Nonlinear Driven Damped Harmonic Oscillator

Katein-Taylor, Kristy
The emergence of wind energy as a competitive means of alternative energy has driven an effort to advance current efficiency levels and reduce overall costs. One area of interest is the improvement of the efficiency of the turbines' aerodynamics, which regularly experience dynamic stall from varying inflow conditions. Understanding the aeroelastic phenomenon between the wind and turbine blade is essential to increasing efficiency. This research investigates a numerical model of a wind turbine blade based on a nonlinear harmonic oscillator in order to mimic real-world conditions. Aerodynamic data from the Wind Energy Research Center is integrated into the model as a first approximation to this highly-coupled system. The complicated response is very sensitive to a variety of parameters, making interpretation difficult; consequently, these results will be used primarily to aid in future research, as well as to design a more advanced model of an elastic blade section appropriate for wind tunnel experiments. It is anticipated that this data can be used to better understand the complex aerodynamics of wind turbine blades, ultimately leading towards increasing the power and efficiency of wind energy technology.
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