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Quiet airfoils for small and large wind turbines

United States Patent

June 12, 2012
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
National Renewable Energy Laboratory - Visit the NREL Technology Transfer Website
Thick airfoil families with desirable aerodynamic performance with minimal airfoil induced noise. The airfoil families are suitable for a variety of wind turbine designs and are particularly well-suited for use with horizontal axis wind turbines (HAWTs) with constant or variable speed using pitch and/or stall control. In exemplary embodiments, a first family of three thick airfoils is provided for use with small wind turbines and second family of three thick airfoils is provided for use with very large machines, e.g., an airfoil defined for each of three blade radial stations or blade portions defined along the length of a blade. Each of the families is designed to provide a high maximum lift coefficient or high lift, to exhibit docile stalls, to be relatively insensitive to roughness, and to achieve a low profile drag.
Tangler; James L. (Boulder, CO), Somers; Dan L. (Port Matilda, PA)
Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC (Golden, CO)
11/ 937,183
November 8, 2007
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN The United States Government has rights in this invention under Contract No. DE-AC36-99GO-10337 between the United States Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, a Division of the Midwest Research Institute.