Performance Enhancement of Fluidic Diode for a Wave Energy System through Genetic Algorithm
Keywords:Wave energy, Flow rectification, Fluidic diode, Oscillating water column, Twin-turbine
The oscillating water column (OWC) is an extensively studied wave energy converter that produces pneumatic power from the motion of the sea waves, which can be harvested using a pair of turbines without additional devices. However, its efficiency is hampered by poor flow blockage. Researchers have proposed a fluidic diode (FD) to improve flow blockage. Its performance is given by diodicity, which is the ratio of pressure drop in reverse to forward flow. A higher resistance in the reverse path signifies enhanced flow blockage, while a lower resistance in the forward flow minimises power loss at the turbine entry. In the present study, the numerical investigation was performed by solving three-dimensional unsteady Reynolds-Averaged Navier Stokes equations using ANSYS-Fluent 16.1 to simulate the flow behaviour inside the FD. Five geometrical parameters for FD were varied to obtain its optimal shape leading to a lower pressure drop in the forward direction and higher in reverse. The optimal shape was obtained through the genetic algorithm, showing a 12% improvement in performance compared to the base model. Detailed fluid flow and performance analysis of both base and optimum models are presented in this article.
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