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CHAPTER 5

CONCLUSION
A high efficiency small scale wind energy portable turbine (SWEPT) was developed for
applications near the ground level where wind speed is below 5 m/s. SWEPT is not only an
highly efficient wind turbine but also compact and portable. It can be used effectively for
powering the low power electronic components especially in the remote locations. It can also
be used as a convenient carry-on modular windmill that can recharge the batteries of
commonly used electronics, such as cellular phones, Global Positioning Systems and pocket
radio.
This study successfully developed a small-scale wind energy portable turbine (SWEPT) of 40
cm diameter, which operates near ground level, below 5 m/s of wind speed. The major
scientific achievements of the study are summarized below:
(i) Novel torque measurement technique for small-scale wind turbine: This thesis developed a
novel torque measurement technique for small-scale wind turbine, which does not require any
torque sensor/transducer.
(ii) Diffuser design: A diffuser for SWEPT was successfully designed and optimized using
computational fluid dynamics (CFD). It was found that the diffuser of about same length as
the turbine diameter with inlet cone angle of 15o and outlet cone angle of 10o can amplify the
wind speed by 1.2 times. The SWEPT with diffuser was found to produce about 1.5 times
higher electrical power than SWEPT without diffuser. However, it was concluded that the
diffuser augmentation was not a suitable solution for power augmentation for small-scale
wind turbines because it makes the device bulky and increases the structural vibrations. The
main design objectives: simplicity, compactness, and portability are lost.

(iii) High efficiency SWEPT: The biggest tangible achievement of this thesis was the
development of high efficiency SWEPT. The final prototype is one the most efficient small-
scale wind turbine reported in literature or available commercially. It has the lowest cut-in
wind speed (1.7 m/s) among all the other available wind turbines of 110
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diameter < 50 cm. The wind turbine has rated power output of 1 watt at 4.0 m/s wind speed,
but it can produce electrical power up to 9.3 watts at 10 m/s wind speed. Most importantly, it
is simple in design, compact, and portable.


(iv) Ultra-low wind speed piezoelectric windmill: An ultra-low start-up speed windmill was
developed that consisted of a 72mm diameter horizontal-axis wind turbine rotor with 12
alternating polarity magnets around its periphery and a 60mm x 20mm x 0.7mm piezoelectric
bimorph element having a magnet at its tip. The windmill operates at very low Reynolds
number (around 20000), but it has reasonably high power coefficient of about 11% at the
optimal tip-speed- W at the
rated wind speed of 4.2 mph (1.9 m/s). An extremely low start-up wind speed of 2.4 mph (1.1
m/s) was achieved by operating the bimorph in actuator mode.


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REFERENCES

1 Global Wind Energy Council Report. Global Wind Statistics; 2012.
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4 Abe K, Nishida M, Sakurai A, Ohya Y, Kihara H, Wada E, et al. Experimental and
numerical investigations of flow fields behind a small wind turbine with a flanged diffuser.
Journal of Wind Engineering and Industrial Aerodynamics. 2005;93(12):951-70.
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