Numerical study of flapping filaments in a uniform fluid flow

J Favier, Alistair Revell, A Pinelli

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The coupled dynamics of multiple flexible filaments (also called monodimensional flags) flapping in a uniform fluid flow is studied numerically for the cases of a side-by-side arrangement, and an in-line configuration. The modal behaviour and hydrodynamical properties of the sets of filaments are studied using a Lattice Boltzmann–Immersed Boundary method. The fluid momentum equations are solved on a Cartesian uniform lattice while the beating filaments are tracked through a series of markers, whose dynamics are functions of the forces exerted by the fluid, the filaments flexural rigidity and the tension. The instantaneous wall conditions on the filaments are imposed via a system of singular body forces, consistently discretised on the lattice of the Boltzmann equation. The results exhibit several flapping modes for two and three filaments placed side-by-side and are compared with experimental and theoretical studies. The hydrodynamical drafting, observed so far only experimentally on configurations of in-line flexible bodies, is also revisited numerically in this work, and the associated physical mechanism is identified. In certain geometrical and structural configuration, it is found that the upstream body experiences a reduced drag compared to the downstream body, which is the contrary of what is encountered on rigid bodies (cars, bicycles).
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 2014


    • Beating filaments; Flapping flags; Inverted hydrodynamic drafting; Immersed Boundary; Lattice Boltzmann


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