Title: Numerical analysis of wind flow patterns over complex hilly terrains: comparison between two commonly used CFD software

Authors: A.Z. Dhunny; M.R. Lollchund; S.D.D.V. Rughooputh

Addresses: Department of Physics, University of Mauritius, Reduit, Mauritius ' Department of Physics, University of Mauritius, Reduit, Mauritius ' Department of Physics, University of Mauritius, Reduit, Mauritius

Abstract: Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) has become a very useful tool to study the wind flow patterns over complex terrains. The present work evaluates the performance of some well-known CFD software for this endeavour. The CFD software considered are OpenFOAM and WindSim, each solving numerically the Reynolds Average Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations in the turbulent regime using the standard k-ε model. Different terrain complexity ranging from smooth terrain to more complex ones are considered: the Askervein and Bolund hills. Simulated results were verified and compared against actual measurements. The study concludes that, for more complex rough terrains, WindSim gives more accurate results as compared to OpenFOAM.

Keywords: wind flow analysis; complex hilly terrains; computational fluid dynamics; CFD; OpenFOAM; WindSim; wind flow patterns; simulation; rough terrain.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGEI.2016.076339

International Journal of Global Energy Issues, 2016 Vol.39 No.3/4, pp.181 - 203

Received: 23 Jun 2015
Accepted: 27 Oct 2015

Published online: 04 May 2016 *

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