Design study of a horizontal axis tidal turbine blade

Siddharth Suhas Kulkarni, Craig Chapman, Hanifa Shah, E.A. P�rn, D.J. Edwards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: A design study was conducted to understand the implications of bio-mimicking a curved caudal fin type horizontal axis tidal turbine blade design, using NACA 0018 is presented. Design/methodology/approach: A method of transforming the traditional horizontal axis tidal turbine by defining a third order polynomial centre line on which the symmetrical airfoils were stationed is also disclosed. Each of the airfoil characteristics: twist angle distribution, chord lengths, and centre line passing through the airfoil centres were automatically transformed to create the curved caudal fin-shaped blade; translating the spinal blade axis into percentage wise chord lengths, using NACA 0018 airfoil. A 3D mesh independency study of a straight blade horizontal axis tidal turbine modelled using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) was carried out. The grid convergence study was produced by employing two turbulence models, the standard k-? model and Shear Stress Transport (SST) in ANSYS CFX. Findings: Three parameters were investigated: mesh resolution, turbulence model, and power coefficient in the initial CFD, analysis. It was found that the mesh resolution and the turbulence model affect the power coefficient results. The power coefficients obtained from the standard k-? model are 15% to 20% lower than the accuracy of the SST model. Further analysis was performed on both the designed blades using ANSYS CFX and SST turbulence model. The results between the straight blade designed according to literature and the caudal fin blade showed a maximum power coefficient of 0.4028%, and 0.5073% respectively for 2.5m/s inlet velocity. Originality/ value: An original caudal fin based tidal turbine blade geometry characterised with symmetrical airfoil distribution, which produces higher efficiency throughout the year i.e. even for the lower tidal flow velocities which occur during the winter months, is presented.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMindanao Journal of Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 1 Jan 2017


  • Design study
  • Horizontal axis tidal turbine
  • Bio-mimicry
  • SST turbulence model
  • NACA 0018


Dive into the research topics of 'Design study of a horizontal axis tidal turbine blade'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this