Tip Vortex Formation and Cavitation

[+] Author and Article Information
B. H. Maines

Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems, Fort Worth, TX 76018

R. E. A. Arndt

Saint Anthony Falls Laboratory, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

J. Fluids Eng 119(2), 413-419 (Jun 01, 1997) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2819149 History: Received January 30, 1996; Revised February 11, 1997; Online December 04, 2007


This paper summarizes recent research on the relation between boundary layer flow, tip vortex structure for a finite span wing, and cavitation. Three hydrofoils of elliptic planform of aspect ratio 3 were constructed with different NACA cross sections. Using a sprayed oil droplet technique to visualize the boundary layer flow, each foil was found to have dramatically different flow separation characteristics on both the suction and pressure sides. Careful examination of the tip region suggests that while the initial stages of vortex roll-up from the pressure side are similar for each hydrofoil section, the vortex boundary layer interaction on the suction side differs for each section. The degree of interaction was observed to increase as the lifting efficiency decreased. Over the Reynolds number range tested, tip vortex cavitation inception has been observed to follow an almost universal scaling. Differences in this scaling law are correlated with the degree of vortex/boundary layer interaction.

Copyright © 1997 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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