Journal article

Drag Moderation by the Melting of an Ice Surface in Contact with Water

Ivan U Vakarelski, Derek YC Chan, Sigurdur T Thoroddsen

Physical Review Letters | AMER PHYSICAL SOC | Published : 2015


We report measurements of the effects of a melting ice surface on the hydrodynamic drag of ice-shell-metal-core spheres free falling in water at a Reynolds of number Re~2×10^{4}-3×10^{5} and demonstrate that the melting surface induces the early onset of the drag crisis, thus reducing the hydrodynamic drag by more than 50%. Direct visualization of the flow pattern demonstrates the key role of surface melting. Our observations support the hypothesis that the drag reduction is due to the disturbance of the viscous boundary layer by the mass transfer from the melting ice surface.

University of Melbourne Researchers


Funding Acknowledgements

Research reported in this publication is supported by the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). We also acknowledge the KAUST Machine Workshop and Mr. Tayyab Mubeen for the production of the ice molds. This work is supported in part by an Australian Research Council Discovery Project Grant to DYCC.