Thruster-interaction Effects on a DP Semi-submersible and a Drill Ship - Measurement and Analysis of the Thruster Wake Flow
Author J.L. Cozijn and R.Hallmann (MARIN)
Title Thruster-interaction Effects on a DP Semi-submersible and a Drill Ship - Measurement and Analysis of the Thruster Wake Flow
Conference/Journal OMAE ASME 32nd International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Arctic Engineering, Nantes, France
Paper no. OMAE2013-11138
Month June
Year 2013

Abstract
Thruster-interaction model tests were carried out in MARIN's Deepwater Towing Tank. Detailed PIV measurements were performed of the wake flow behind the azimuthing thrusters on two different DP vessels, a Semi-submersible and a Drill Ship. The flow velocities were measured in a large number of cross sections at different distances from the thrusters. The PIV measurements provide a detailed image of the flow velocities in the thruster wake, showing the axial velocities, as well as the transverse and vertical velocity components.

First, measurements were carried out on a DP Semi-submersible (scale 1:40), which was equipped with 8 azimuthing thrusters. The results of the PIV measurements show the wake flow, interacting with nearby thrusters and the opposite pontoon of the semi-submersible. An example is shown in Figure 1 below. Deflection of the thruster wake, caused by the Coanda effect, was observed. The results for thrusters with a 7 deg downward tilt were compared with the results for thrusters with a horizontal propeller axis. Furthermore, the effect of ambient current was investigated.

Second, measurements were carried out on a DP Drill Ship (scale 1:40), which had 6 azimuthing thrusters. The results of these PIV measurements also gave insight in the wake flow behind the azimuthing thrusters and the interactions between neighbouring thrusters. An example is shown in Figure 2 below. In this case, special attention was paid to the development of the thruster wake along the vessel length, up to a distance of more than 40D downstream.

The results of the present research are used to further improve the understanding of the physics of thruster interaction effects. Furthermore, the results will serve as validation material for CFD calculations that are foreseen in the near future.

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