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CFD Assignment 1

This report outlines an investigation of the effects of the y+ distance on the performance of
a foil travelling through water. The aim of this analysis is to determine appropriate wall
treatment methods and associated mesh parameters for flow separation to be accurately
captured in the CFD program. A symmetric NACA foil shape, 0012, was selected and
analysed at a single speed, Re=1*10^6, at a range of angles of attack.
The purpose of the study is to determine the effect of wall treatment methods on flow
separation characteristics of a foil at a range of angles of attacks. The effects of the mesh
along the foil edge will affect the flow separation and thus the y+ value (distance of first
node from the wall) is studied. The results of the CFD analysis were validated against
experimental data and lifting line theory.
Geometric Model
The foil shape chosen was NACA 0012 as there was much available experimental data. This
allows the results from the numerical analysis to be compared for the lift and drag
coefficients. Below shows a figure of the used geometry as well as the details and
dimensions of the foil used.

Span (m) 0.1

Chord Length (m) 0.05
Aspect Ratio 0.2
Area (m2) 0.005

Foil/wing theory
Foils are typically used as lifting or control surfaces in the forms of wings of planes, rudder
or hydrofoils as some examples. As the foil passes through the fluid, whether it be air or
water, opposing forces called lift and drag are generated due to the planform area, speed it
is travelling and the density of the fluid. When a symmetric foil is at a zero angle of attack to
the fluid it is travelling through the upstream and downstream forces will remain along the
incident axes however as the angle of attack increases and the pressure distribution around
the foil changes due to fluid being pushed around the surfaces at different speeds the
resultant forces will deviate from the incident axis and the lift and drag values will change.
As the angle of attack increases and the pressure gradient becomes too adverse separation
of the boundary layer from the surface will occur. This will cause a reduction in the lifting
force due to reduction in planform area which results in the rate of increase of the lift with
AoA to reduct to a point called the stall point where the lifting force will then decrease.

It is important to be aware of these angles as the control surface will lose effectiveness
beyond these angles which could lead to consequences regarding the safety of the operator
of the associated vessel/plane.
Flow separation occurs where an insufficiently streamlined object in a large Reynolds
Number flow causes a turbulent wake region to appear. This is due to the fluids inertia
being such that it cannot follow the curved path around the body of the object (TEXTBOOK
Boundary Layer &Effect of y+ values

Lifting Line Theory

Simulation Setup/Methodology
The foil was generated using the website (http://www.airfoiltools.com/airfoil/naca4digit),
imported into design modeller and lofted the length of the span. The foil was then
translated along the x-axis so that the global origin is located at quarter chord.
Domains were then created around the foil and global origin, a cylinder contained within a
rectangular prism as a subdomain. This allows less changes to be made when analysing
different angles of attack as the inlet and outlet boundaries in the box can remain while the
cylinder can be rotated for each angle of attack without re-meshing. The size of the domain
was determined using ITTC recommendations. (INSERT REFERENCE). These domain
recommendations are given for general analysis of ships so these are not directly applicable
to the problem analysed in this report however due to the bespoke nature of CFD analysis
there is not a direct domain recommendation for this problem so it was deteremined that
these recommendations would suit. Visual inspection of the effect of the domain
boundaries on the fluid flow on the foil should be investigated to ensure that there is no
interactions. ITTC recommendations uses length between perpendiculars (Lpp) as a
reference lengtg, for this study chord length is used in place of this. The figure below shows
the dimensions of the fluid domain.

The mesh for the analysis was created in ANSYS Workbench using an unstructured
Tetrahedral mesh. This allows rapid mesh generation for curved surfaces and is commonly
used as a starting point to then develop a more accurate mesh. Mesh refinement is required
around the foil as the fluid flow over the surface leads to flow separation and complexities
that require more mesh points to monitor the ?DIRECTION? of the flow.
The mesh sizing is broken up into different sizing types:
- Body sizing: which is applied to all domains analysed
- Face sizing: which is applied to the foil faces
- Edge sizing: applied to the leading and trailing edges of the foil
The details of the settings used to generate the mesh are given below:
- Physics Preference: CFD
- Solver Preference: CFX
Inflation layer
Setting details:
- Collision Avoidance: Layer Compression
- Fix First Layer: Yes
- Maximum Angle: 180 deg
Mesh Convergence
A mesh convergence study was conducted to ensure that the final mesh used for the study
was reasonably valid. This should give the best balance between the number of nodes and
accuracy of the result. The values for the coefficients of lift, drag and moment about quarter
chord are used as a parameter for this. The equations for this are given below extracted
𝐶𝑚 =
1 2
2 𝜌𝑉 𝑆𝑐
𝐶𝐿 =
1 2
2 𝜌𝑉 𝑆
𝐶𝐷 =
1 2
2 𝜌𝑉 𝑆

The speed used for the domain is determined using the required Reynolds number of
The below equation is used with the given values for fresh water at 25C according to ITTC
(INSERT REFERENCE): rho= 997.0476 kg/m^3, v=?, L=0.05m, mu=8.9*10^-4 Pa.s
𝑅𝑒 =
𝑅𝑒𝜇 106 ∗ 8.9𝑒10−4
𝑣= = = 3.197𝑚𝑠 −1
𝜌𝐿 997.0476 ∗ 0.05

The inlet and outlets are shown in the diagram with the flow running along the x-axis in the
(NEGATIVE) direction. Top, bottom and side are defined as walls with ?????.
Results and Discussion




Theory Questions

CFD has its place in engineering alongside model test experiments and potential flow
simulations with its own advantages and disadvantages.
- It can resolve a range of flow physics incorporating friction, pressure, multi-phase flow
and flow separation.
- It can determine the motion of objects with 6 degrees of freedom
- Accurate enough for engineering applications as it is used widely in industry providing
best practice guidelines for a range of problems
- The software, hardware and training are expensive
- Requires an experienced user as there are many parameters that could affect the
quality of the simulation e.g. mesh, algorithm, convergence
- Validation required from experiments