Passive control of flow-induced vibration of a sphere using a trip wire

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We experimentally investigated the potential of a trip wire as a passive control mechanism for controlling flow-induced vibration (FIV) of a three-dimensional bluff body. The effect of a surface trip wire was investigated for varying diameter ratio in the range 1.3×10−2⩽k/D⩽6.7×10−2, where k is the wire diameter and D is the sphere diameter, and trip-wire location in the range 20≤ϕ≤60, where the angle ϕ was measured from the leading stagnation point. The FIV response of the sphere is characterised for a wide range of reduced velocities 3⩽U⩽20, defined as U=U/fnwD, where U is the free stream velocity and fnw is the natural frequency of the system in water. It was found that for a fixed trip-wire diameter ratio, the vibration amplitude decreased progressively with increasing ϕ. Furthermore, the synchronisation regime became narrower, and the mode II and the plateau branches of the FIV response occurred for lower reduced velocities, compared to those for a smooth sphere. The control was highly effective for high reduced velocities (U>10) with a maximum reduction of up to 97.8% for ϕ=60. Interestingly, thicker trip wires (k/D>1.3×10−2) were effective in disrupting Mode I, but induced a galloping-like response for higher reduced velocities. Tripping proved to be an effective passive control strategy for spheres, with the optimal trip-wire size varying across Mode I to Mode III.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104052
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Fluids and Structures
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024


  • Flow control
  • Fluid–structure interaction
  • Vortex streets
  • Wakes

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