Samira Nazari

ORCID ID: 0009-0002-7029-2806

Research Project Title: Mitigation of wind turbine losses through biofouling and anti-contamination strategies

Supervisors/s: Dr David Culliton, Dr Lilibeth Zambrano

Project Funding: Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) National Energy Research Development and Demonstration (RD&D) Funding Programme



  • Biography
  • Research Project Description
  • Publications and Outputs


Hi, my name is Samira Nazari, and I am an Engineering PhD candidate at SETU Carlow, in Ireland. I started my SEAI-funded SPOTBlade project in September 2022. Prior to my current research, I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. I then completed a Master’s degree in Energy Systems Engineering at Shiraz University in Iran, in 2020. My Master’s thesis was a numerical study of the effect of frame geometry on the performance of photovoltaic modules. I subsequently published a research paper on this topic in the Energy Conversion and Management journal, and I hold an IRI patent related to my thesis. I have also worked as an equipment manufacturer and project progress control supervisor in a manufacturing company, and as an engineering intern at a Petrochemical Complex. My research interests include computational fluid dynamics, fluid mechanics, and programming. In my free time, I enjoy hiking, practicing yoga, and photography.

Research Project Description

This element of the SPOTBlade project will develop a cost-effective, smart, antifouling surface treatment for application on wind turbine blades used in offshore wind energy installations. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modelling will underpin the evolution of a smart, responsive, surface technology which will passively prevent the attachment of microbiological material to any marine-exposed surface; a degradation process which results in significant financial losses for the affected industry. The research will harness current biofouling and Microbiologically Influenced Corrosion (MIC) knowledge, in combination with novel CFD modelling and laboratory-based testing. The associated project plan will establish an appropriate project Work Packages with key tasks, milestones, and deliverables identified. The main aim of the research is to develop a representative CFD model using relevant modelling software (Abaqus, Ansys Fluid, Star CCM+), which will be used to direct laboratory testing of the optimised surface morphology and materials. The results obtained from the laboratory testing will be iteratively used to enhance the CFD model(s), to dynamically create more accurate designs and ultimately lead to the creation of effective antifouling solutions. Key project outputs will also inform the CA20130 Euro-MIC COST Action.

Publications and Outputs

  1. Nazari, S. and M. Eslami, Impact of frame perforations on passive cooling of photovoltaic modules: CFD analysis of various patterns. Energy Conversion and Management, 2021. 239: p. 114228.

Brief description: This article presents a study of the impact of different perforation patterns on the flow field, temperature distribution, and power output of photovoltaic (PV) modules. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations were conducted for both forced and natural convection, with various perforation patterns introduced into the aluminum frame of the PV module. Results show that perforations can improve PV module performance, especially in natural convection conditions. Adittionally, it  presents two selected designs that achieved power generation improvements in typical weather conditions.

  1. Nazari, S. and Eslami, M., (2022). Creating Holes or Grooves in Photovoltaic Module’s Frame. IRI Patent Number: 106232.

Brief description: This invention proposes creating holes or grooves in a photovoltaic module’s frame to passively cool it and increase its efficiency. The passive cooling method changes the airflow pattern behind the module, reducing its temperature and increasing electricity production by up to 1%. It’s a more economically efficient solution than active cooling methods and reduces the amount of aluminum used in module production. This design improves current-voltage and power-voltage outputs and is especially beneficial when wind speed is low.