To achieve a reliable structural model for vortex-induced vibration (VIV) the prediction of flexible risers, this paper employs structural systems with different geometrical nonlinearities (including a linear structure, a nonlinear one, a coupled cross-flow, and axial nonlinear one) and a classical oscillator to simulate cross-flow VIV. By comparing the experimental and simulation results, it is found that when the drag coefficient is assumed to be a fixed constant along the cylinder (i.e., the damping model is linear function of current velocity), it can affect the vibration amplitude considerably and may alter the dominant modes. When the excited mode of VIV is bending-stiffness dominant, the cross-flow structural nonlinearities can have a profound stiffening effect on vibration response. Although the introduction of axial deformation can reduce this function, the coupled cross-flow and axial nonlinearities still have the effect of decreasing the VIV amplitude.

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