Abstract

The negative effect of biofouling on ship resistance has been investigated since the early days of naval architecture. However, for more precise prediction of fuel consumption of ships, understanding the effect of biofouling on ship propulsion performance is also important. In this study, computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations for the full-scale performance of KP505 propeller in open water, including the presence of marine biofouling, were conducted. To predict the effect of barnacle fouling on the propeller performance, experimentally obtained roughness functions of barnacle fouling were used in the wall-function of the CFD software. The roughness effect of barnacles of varying sizes and coverages on the propeller open water performance was predicted for advance coefficients ranging from 0.2 to 0.8. From the simulations, drastic effects of barnacle fouling on the propeller open water performance were found. The result suggests that the thrust coefficient decreases while the torque coefficient increases with increasing level of surface fouling, which leads to a reduction of the open water efficiency of the propeller. Using the obtained result, the penalty of propeller fouling on the required shaft power was predicted. Finally, further investigations were made into the roughness effect on the flow characteristics around the propeller and the results were in correspondence with the findings on the propeller open water performance.

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