Author(s): Victor Hidalgo; Stalyn Simbana; P. Amparo Lopez-Jimenez; Modesto Perez-Sanchez
Keywords: Pelton Turbine; OpenFOAM; ACMI; Buckets
Abstract: The growth of the energy sector based on the creation and repowering of hydroelectric plants has been remarkable due to their high efficiency, low environmental impact and generation of employment opportunities in Ecuador. Several hydroelectric plants of between 500 KW to 1MW were installed in the rural areas and this is being one of the most benefited sectors in the country. Most of the machines installed were Pelton turbines. In this research, an optimized bucket model has been developed based on a model and working conditions of a commercial turbine. This bucket was simulated with a PIMPLE algorithm together with the KW-SST turbulence model within the OpenFOAM software. Furthermore, the application of the Arbitrary Coupled Mesh Interface (ACMI) approach and its advantages over the (AMI) approach for data transfer between stationary and rotating meshes were evaluated. Finally, the results obtained with both methods were compared and the reproduction of the phenomenon was confirmed to a high approximation based on previous studies and experimental data.