Manchester Metropolitan University's Research Repository

Development of a 3D fully nonlinear potential flow wave tank in framework of OpenFOAM

Lin, Zaibin and Qian, Ling and Bai, Wei and Ma, Zhihua and Chen, Hao and Zhou, Jian (2019) Development of a 3D fully nonlinear potential flow wave tank in framework of OpenFOAM. In: 38th International Conference on Ocean, Offshore and Artic Engineering (OMAE 2019), 09 June 2019 - 14 June 2019, Glasgow, Scotland.


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A 3-Dimensional numerical wave tank based on the fully nonlinear potential flow theory has been developed in OpenFOAM, where the Laplace equation of velocity potential is discretized by Finite Volume Method. The water surface is tracked by the semi-Eulerian-Lagrangian method, where water particles on the free surface are allowed to move vertically only. The incident wave is generated by specifying velocity profiles at inlet boundary with a ramp function at the beginning of simulation to prevent initial transient disturbance. Additionally, an artificial damping zone is located at the end of wave tank to sufficiently absorb the outgoing waves before reaching downstream boundary. A five-point smoothing technique is applied at the free surface to eliminate the saw-tooth instability. The proposed wave model is validated against theoretical results and experimental data. The developed solver could be coupled with multiphase Navier-Stokes solvers in OpenFOAM in the future to establish an integrated versatile numerical wave tank for studying efficiently wave structure interaction problems.

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