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Propeller in Non-Uniform Inflow

To simulate a propeller in its natural environment the velocity distribution infront of the propeller for a towed ship (nominal wakefield) can be imported. The blockage of the ship and the influence of the ship-boundary-layer have an effect on the wakefield and therefore also on the propeller performance.

Propeller in non-uniform wakefield

Figure 1: Propeller in a Non-uniform Wakefield.

The velocities upstream the propeller influence the hydrodynamic inflow-angle of the propeller blades at different circumferential positions. This results in thrust and torque fluctuations if the wakefield is non-uniform. Knowing the characteristics of the wakefield, cavitation and vibration analysis can follow up.

The left side of the animation shows the pressure distribution on the blades of a propeller working in a typical wakefield. On the right side the corresponding thrusts of the five blades and the whole propeller are shown.

Animation: Pressure Distribution (Pressure Side) of a Propeller Working in a Typical Wakefield.

This feature is the basis for coupling to RANS solvers. Please click here for more information.