How to make a wet pole twitch AKA fluid-structure interaction

We’re celebrating this week with a bottle of champagne, as the next checkpoint in our curvy road to PhD has been achieved. Finally we got a first model of fluid-structure interaction to work!

So what’s the big fuss about it? Well, these kind of models can predict e.g. how a ship or other constraction will respond to the load exerted by a wave. Respond, or fail to respond and be washed away. Thus, the prediction coming from the simulation makes a design much easier, as we know what one can expect in real conditions. We also made a small scale lab model of a beam:

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Look how the waves make the pole twitch 🙂

And then we have a similar simulation in 2 dimensions:

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You can see that the waves are very benign here, unlike in the experiment, where they are close to break. So you have a hint that this model still requires extension, otherwise we would be unemployed 😉 But it’s a great starting point for further research, so keep on looking for upcoming posts!

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