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Performance Analysis of Flapping Foil Flow Energy Harvester Mounted on Piezoelectric Transducer using Meshfree Particle Method
Author(s): Muhammad Jamil, A. Javed, Irtiza Ali Shah, Mohtashim Mansoor, Asad Hameed, K. Djidjeli
Keywords: Fluid-Structure Interaction, Semi-active flapping foil, Electromechanical coupling, Dynamic stall effect
Performance of a semi-active flapping foil flow energy harvester, coupled with piezoelectric transducer is analyzed. The airfoil is mounted on a spring, damper and piezoelectric transducer arrangement in its translational mode. External excitation is imparted in pitch mode and system is allowed to oscillate in its translational mode as a result of unsteady fluid forces. Piezoelectric transducer is used as electrical power converter. Flow around moving airfoil surface is solved on a meshfree nodal cloud using Radial Basis Function in Finite Difference Mode (RBF-FD). Fourth order Runge-Kutta Method is used for time marching solution of solid equations. Prior to solving the complex Fluid-Structure Interaction problem, a parametric study is proposed to identify the values of kinematic, mechanical and geometric variables which could offer an improved energy harvesting performance. For this purpose the problem is modeled as a coupled electromechanical system using Lagrange energy equations. Airfoil lift and pitching moment are formulated through Theodorson's two dimensional thin-plate model and a parametric analysis is conducted to work out the optimized values of pivot location, pitch amplitude, spring stiffness and damping constant. Subsequent computational analysis resulted in an enhanced performance compared to potential flow model with an efficiency of up to 27\% based on total power extraction through the flow. Higher efficiency is obtained when pitch axis is located aft of mid chord. However, this setting does not corresponds to the maximum power output. Interestingly, the power is maximized at much lower efficiency values.