27 March 2012 Power and efficiency analysis of a flapping wing wind energy harvester
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Energy harvesting from flowing fluids using flapping wings and fluttering aeroelastic structures has recently gained significant research attention as a possible alternative to traditional rotary turbines, especially at and below the centimeter scale. One promising approach uses an aeroelastic flutter instability to drive limit cycle oscillations of a flexible piezoelectric energy harvesting structure. Such a system is well suited to miniaturization and could be used to create self-powered wireless sensors wherever ambient flows are available. In this paper, we examine modeling of the aerodynamic forces, power extraction, and efficiency of such a flapping wing energy harvester at a low Reynolds number on the order of 1000. Two modeling approaches are considered, a quasi-steady method generalized from existing models of insect flight and a modified model that includes terms to account to the effects of dynamic stall. The modified model is shown to provide better agreement with CFD simulations of a flapping energy harvester.
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Matthew Bryant, Matthew Bryant, Michael W. Shafer, Michael W. Shafer, Ephrahim Garcia, Ephrahim Garcia, "Power and efficiency analysis of a flapping wing wind energy harvester", Proc. SPIE 8341, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2012, 83410E (27 March 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.915344; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.915344

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