In this study, the ducted propeller has been numerically investigated under oblique flow, which is crucial and challenging for the design and safe operation of the thruster driven vessel and dynamic positioning (DP) system. A Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes (RANS) model has been first evaluated in the quasi-steady investigation on a single ducted propeller operating in open water condition, and then a hybrid RANS/LES model is adapted for the transient sliding mesh computations. A representative test geometry considered here is a marine model thruster, which is discretized with structured hexahedral cells, and the gap between the blade tip and nozzle is carefully meshed to capture the flow dynamics. The computational results are assessed by a systematic grid convergence study and compared with the available experimental data. As a part of the novel contribution, multiple incidence angles from 15 deg to 60 deg have been analyzed with different advance coefficients. The main emphasis has been placed on the hydrodynamic loads that act on the propeller blades and nozzle as well as their variation with different configurations. The results reveal that while the nozzle absorbs much effort from the oblique flow, the imbalance between blades at different positions is still noticeable. Such unbalance flow dynamics on the blades, and the nozzle has a direct implication on the variation of thrust and torque of a marine thruster.

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