PhD project: The influence of the properties of antifouling coatings on the skin friction and turbulent boundary layer along a ship

PhD student: Ir. Henk Benschop

Project start: January 2014

Project description:
Biofouling of a ship is the undesired settling and growth of marine organisms on the submerged hull of the ship. This increases the ship's skin friction and hence the fuel consumption, the greenhouse gas emissions and the operational costs of the ship. To prevent biofouling the ship's hull is commonly covered with toxic antifouling coatings, which are, however, environmentally unfriendly and facing increasing legal restrictions. This PhD project is part of the European FP7 SEAFRONT program with the aim to develop environmentally benign antifouling coatings, which are effective in both preventing biofouling and reducing the ship's skin friction. The goal of the PhD project is to develop fundamental understanding of the influence of the antifouling coating properties on the skin friction and the turbulent boundary layer along the ship. The project work plan comprises: (1) Detailed laboratory measurements in a water tunnel on turbulent boundary layers over various antifouling coatings by means of Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) and a drag plate sensor. (2) Fully resolving Direct Numerical Simulations (DNS) on turbulent boundary layers over a coated wall with a model surface texture. A parametric study will be performed to study the effect of surface texture properties (e.g, shape, size, spatial distribution of asperities) on the skin friction and structure and dynamics of near-wall turbulence.