Presentation Title

Augmenting the Capability of Hydrokinetic Turbines Through Air Lubrication

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Location

MSE 103

Type of Presentation

Oral Talk

Abstract

Unfortunately, fossil-fuels are no longer ubiquitous and have caused a notable decline on Earth’s health. As a result, sustainable practices are fundamental issues that must be addressed as the need for more environmentally benign methods of extracting energy becomes increasingly valuable. In order to support this transition from fossil fuels to a more sustainable system, our research explores the possibility of increasing the efficiency of hydrokinetic turbines, a device that converts the kinetic energy of moving water into electricity, by using air lubrication. Air lubrication is a process where we apply air to the propellers, in addition to a water current, to potentially reduce inherent drag effects on the turbine. To conduct the study, air flow rate and air bubble size were systematically varied using a manometer and 3-D printed parts. A flowmeter and an in-house developed MATLAB script were then used to quantify the resulting turbine frequency. Our research so far has found that there may be a correlation between an increase in rotational frequency and the amount of air we apply to the turbine. However, the differences are not yet significant enough to draw a conclusion. We hope that our future investigations lead to more diverse methods to combat Earth-degradation.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Nov 12th, 3:15 PM Nov 12th, 3:30 PM

Augmenting the Capability of Hydrokinetic Turbines Through Air Lubrication

MSE 103

Unfortunately, fossil-fuels are no longer ubiquitous and have caused a notable decline on Earth’s health. As a result, sustainable practices are fundamental issues that must be addressed as the need for more environmentally benign methods of extracting energy becomes increasingly valuable. In order to support this transition from fossil fuels to a more sustainable system, our research explores the possibility of increasing the efficiency of hydrokinetic turbines, a device that converts the kinetic energy of moving water into electricity, by using air lubrication. Air lubrication is a process where we apply air to the propellers, in addition to a water current, to potentially reduce inherent drag effects on the turbine. To conduct the study, air flow rate and air bubble size were systematically varied using a manometer and 3-D printed parts. A flowmeter and an in-house developed MATLAB script were then used to quantify the resulting turbine frequency. Our research so far has found that there may be a correlation between an increase in rotational frequency and the amount of air we apply to the turbine. However, the differences are not yet significant enough to draw a conclusion. We hope that our future investigations lead to more diverse methods to combat Earth-degradation.