Airfoil Selection Methodology for Small Wind Turbines

Valentin Salgado, Cesar Troya, Gustavo Moreno, Jaime Molina


On wind turbine technology, the aerodynamic performance is fundamental to increase efficiency. Nowadays there are several databases with airfoils designed and simulated for different applications, that is why it is necessary to select those suitable for a specific application. This work presents a new methodology for airfoil selection used in feasibility and optimization of small wind turbines with low cut-in speed. On the first stage airfoils data is tested on XFOIL software to check its compatibility with the simulator; then, arithmetic mean criteria is recursively used to discard underperformed airfoils; the best airfoil data was exported to Matlab for a deeper analysis. In the second part, data points were interpolated using “splines” to calculate glide ratio and stability across multiple angles of attack, those who present a bigger steadiness were conserved. As a result, 3 airfoils, from an initial group of 189, were selected due to its performance above the average as exemplification of the methodology.


Airfoil Selection Methodology; Low cut-in speed; Matlab Script; Small Wind Turbines; Spline Interpolation; XFOIL Simulation

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