Validation of a simple aerodynamic model capable to predict the interaction effects occuring between two generic wind propulsion systems

Giovanni Bordogna, Lex Keuning, Rene Huijsmans, Fabio Vittorio Fossati, Marco Belloli

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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In recent years wind-assisted propulsion for commercial ships has gained an increasing interest as valuable alternative to reduce fuel pollutant emissions. However, the development of feasible and commercially viable wind propulsion systems to partially (or fully) propel a ship is nowadays hindered by the difficulties of modelling the complicated aerodynamic and hydrodynamic aspects involved. From an aerodynamic point of view, it appears that one of the main challenges of predicting the performance of a wind-assisted ship, is to properly evaluate the interaction effects that occur between the various wind propulsion systems mounted on the deck of the ship. This research deals with the validation of a simple and quick-to-use aerodynamic model that is capable of evaluating such effects, i.e. upwash, downwash and wake, occurring between two generic propulsion systems placed at any given relative position on the ship's deck. The wind propulsion systems might assume any given angle of attack; the flow can be attached as well as separated. Such aerodynamic model, that was first presented in [1], consists of the horseshoe vortex method modified with semi-empirical formulas to take into account the effects of viscosity. First, the results provided by the aerodynamic model were compared with results obtained by using more sophisticated tools, i.e. a CFD body force model and RANS CFD. Then, experimental validation was carried out by means of dedicated wind-tunnel tests. It can be concluded that, despite the simplicity of the aerodynamic model employed, it proved to give reasonable results when compared to more sophisticated tools and to experimental data. REFERENCES [1] K. Roncin and J.M. Kobus, “Dynamic simulation of two sailing boats in match racing”, Sports Engineering , Vol. 7, pp. 139-152, (2004).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the12th International Conference on Hydrodynamics-ICHD 2016
EditorsR.H.M. Huijsmans
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventICHD 2016: 12th International Conference on Hydrodynamics - Egmond aan Zee, Netherlands
Duration: 18 Sept 201623 Sept 2016


ConferenceICHD 2016: 12th International Conference on Hydrodynamics
CityEgmond aan Zee


  • Ship hydrodynamics resistance
  • propulsion
  • powering
  • seakeeping
  • manoeuvrability
  • slamming
  • sloshing
  • impact
  • green water
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics


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