Fundamentals and Knowledge Relevant to the Drag Reduction Through Air Cavitation of Ship's Hulls

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E Amromin


Numerous experiments with ship drag reduction by air bottom cavitation in diverse countries have exhibited very different achievements. Therefore, a paper clarifying mechanics of this drag reduction and describing the proven design algorithms is appropriate.  Solutions of an ideal fluid problem existing in diverse ranges of Froude number are compared and the solutions suitable for ship drag reduction are considered in more detail. It is emphasized in this paper that a cavity locker at the trailing edge of the bottom niche (recess) assigned for the cavity is necessary to reduce the necessary air supply to the cavity and to mitigate the cavity tail pulsation resulting in a drag penalty. It is also pointed out that the bottom niche depth must allow for cavity withstanding under impact of waves in seaways. Bottom cavitation may even reduce wave-induced loads on the hull. With taking into account the above-mentioned design aspects, the energy spent on the air supply can be minimized. An algorithm of bottom design based on ideal fluid theory is also explained in the paper. Comparisons with several model test results are provided to illustrate the algorithm employment.

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