Aerodynamic effects of Gurney flaps on the rotor blades of a research wind turbine
This paper investigates the aerodynamic impact of Gurney flaps on a research wind turbine of the Hermann-Föttinger Institute at the Technische Universität Berlin. The rotor radius is 1.5 m, and the blade configurations consist of the clean and the tripped baseline cases, emulating the effects of forced leading-edge transition. The wind tunnel experiments include three operation points based on tip speed ratios of 3.0, 4.3, and 5.6, reaching Reynolds numbers of approximately 2.5×105. The measurements are taken by means of three different methods: ultrasonic anemometry in the wake, surface pressure taps in the midspan blade region, and strain gauges at the blade root. The retrofit applications consist of two Gurney flap heights of 0.5 % and 1.0 % in relation to the chord length, which are implemented perpendicular to the pressure side at the trailing edge. As a result, the Gurney flap configurations lead to performance improvements in terms of the axial wake velocities, the angles of attack and the lift coefficients. The enhancement of the root bending moments implies an increase in both the rotor torque and the thrust. Furthermore, the aerodynamic impact appears to be more pronounced in the tripped case compared to the clean case. Gurney flaps are considered a passive flow-control device worth investigating for the use on horizontal-axis wind turbines.
Published in: Wind Energy Science, 10.5194/wes-5-1645-2020, Copernicus