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SSPA cavitation tunnel

Novel tests-rigs to define the best Active Flow Control strategies for tidal turbine blades

The NEMMO project team has made significant progress in finding the best testing procedures and strategies to improve blade materials and drive down the maintenance costs of tidal turbines.

The team developed a set of tailor-made testing procedures to carry out a sizeable experimental test programme in a cavitation tunnel at SSPA’s facilities in Sweden. These testing procedures for integrated harsh marine stresses enable the replication and modelling of composite blade lifespan, cavitation wear rates, bio-fouling growth, ageing in a harsh marine environment and hydrodynamic performance.

After carrying out Large Eddy Simulations (LES) and experimental modelling for turbine blade operation, the project team has identified the best performing Active Flow Control (AFC) strategies. It did this using the open-source software OpenFOAM to evaluate the original Magallanes blade, integrating the AFC appendages and novel blade design in model scale. These tests were carried out under real operation and cavitation tunnel conditions.

Read more about the methodologies and test results here


Check out the short video of the turbine being tested:

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