The discovery of high frequency contributions in flexible cylinder VIV during the DeepStar experiments revealed a significant omission and raised concerns among riser designers due to the high fatigue contribution. Researchers are now focusing on this area by analyzing the sparse experimental data or performing simplified experiments. Building on past success with CFD simulations, this numerical study focuses on understanding the origin and cause of the 3rd harmonic in particular. An array of basic spring supported rigid cylinder and various configurations of flexible cylinder computations are performed to validate CFD and to gain a qualitative understanding. A relationship between the hydrodynamic force causing the 3rd harmonic and cylinder motion as well its spatial characteristics is established.

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