Design and CFD Analysis of a Micro Kaplan Turbine Runner

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Addis Ababa University


Utilization of Micro hydro power as renewable energy source is giving great attention now a days. This micro hydropower energy can be obtained from potential hydro sites with sufficient water discharge and pressure head. Depending upon the sites, water turbines are designed and manufactured to avail hydropower energy. Low head turbines are widely used on run of rivers and they classified under reaction turbines. They operate at higher flow rate, smaller head and faster rotational speed, thus being more compact than other types of machines. With the increasing cost of energy and the high demand of green energy, the micro hydro Kaplan power plants gain special attention. The development of micro hydro Kaplan power plants on large scale will generate enough energy for the rural community and are being economically profitable. They comprise runner and draft tube and the efficiency of hydro Kaplan reaction turbine is significantly affected by the performance runner. In this present work focused on the design and CFD analysis of a micro Kaplan runner for selected potential site called Denkaka village which is located in Oromia Region, Ethiopia. This runner design and performance improvement is prime concern. In this research, size of the runner was determined using formulas depend on the site data of 3.125m gross head and 0.6m3⁄s fluid flow rate. Geometrical parameters (Dtip =0.4m, Dhub=0.15m, nmax=26��−1 and net power capacity is 14.7 kW) are to be determined. Different tools were used to run simulations. These include XFLR5 soft-ware to determine NACA2412 coordinate pointes of blade profile, Solid work used to make solid 3D model of the runner and ANYS CFX to do its volumetric meshing, fluid flow simulation, for numerical flow analysis and to evaluate the hydraulic performance of the runner. The complete flow pattern is numerically simulated using k-�� model. Simulations have been carried out by varying fluid flow rate and runner speed of the turbine. Research results show 14.7kW of net hydraulic power output and 91.6% hydraulic efficiency were generated. Also as obtained from the pressure contour analysis, there is maximum at the leading edge and then decreases towards the trailing edge. The results obtained from flow simulations were found to be in accordance with turbine characteristics curves. The comparison shows that there is close similarities between present and Dr. Ruchi Khare work.



Micro Kaplan, Runner Blade, CFD, Hydropower, Renewable energy