Numerical investigation of three-dimensional cavitation evolution and excited pressure fluctuations around a twisted hydrofoil

Bin Ji*, Xianwu Luo, Yulin Wu, Kazuyoshi Miyagawa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Unsteady cavitating turbulent flow around a twisted hydrofoil was analyzed to illustrate the physical mechanism of the cavitygenerated pressure fluctuations. The numerical simulations of cavitating flow were based on the Partially-Averaged Navier-Stokes (PANS) method and a mass transfer cavitation model. The validity of PANS model has been evaluated and confirmed in cavitation simulations by present authors using three different cases, 2D hydrofoil (Ji et al. 2012 [37]), 3D hydrofoil (Ji et al. 2013 [31]) and marine propeller (Ji et al. 2012 [38]), which shows that the PANS model with f k = 0.2 and f ε = 1 can obtain more accurate estimates of unsteady cavitating flows with large-scale fluctuations at a reasonable cost. In present paper we intended to shed light on the physical process responsible for the pressure fluctuations excited by cavitation. The cavity volume was analyzed to illustrate the relationship between the cavitation evolution and the pressure fluctuations. The results show that the cavity volumetric acceleration curve tracks remarkably well with the main features of the time-dependent pressure fluctuations except for the high frequency component. Thus, the cavity volumetric acceleration is the main source of the excited pressure fluctuations by cavitation. It is noted that the cavitation induced pressure fluctuations are transmitted along the suction surface of the hydrofoil and are synchronized with those on the pressure surface at the midplane of the twisted hydrofoil. Further, the pressure fluctuations on the pressure surface decrease towards the center from both the leading and trailing edges of the hydrofoil, with a minimum at 60% chord length from the leading edge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2659-2668
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Mechanical Science and Technology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jul


  • Cavitation
  • Cavity volumetric acceleration
  • Pressure fluctuation
  • Twisted hydrofoil

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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