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This paper proposes a parametric optimization of a flux-switching electrical machine customized for a wind turbine application with a typical operating range for average and low-power wind energy sites. Statistics of wind resources are taken into consideration for the machine design for definition of the turbine power envelope. Both copper and iron losses for three different machine designs are evaluated. A very important consideration taken in this design is the elimination of gearbox requirements for coupling to the turbine. Although the developed approach makes the machine somewhat voluminous, the overall performance is highly improved because a direct-drive flux-switching electrical generator becomes very competitive for small-scale wind turbines. The design methodology presented in this paper will support widespread application of small-scale wind turbines for rural systems, farms, and villages. This paper concludes by demonstrating that a very cost-effective distributed wind system can be approached with this design.
Date of Publication: Nov.-Dec. 2012