Turbulent and transitional modeling of drag on oceanographic measurement devices

J. P. Abraham, J. M. Gorman, F. Reseghetti, E. M. Sparrow, W. J. Minkowycz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Computational fluid dynamic techniques have been applied to the determination of drag on oceanographic devices (expendable bathythermographs). Such devices, which are used to monitor changes in ocean heat content, provide information that is dependent on their drag coefficient. Inaccuracies in drag calculations can impact the estimation of ocean heating associated with global warming. Traditionally, ocean-heating information was based on experimental correlations which related the depth of the device to the fall time. The relation of time-depth is provided by a fall-rate equation (FRE). It is known that FRE depths are reasonably accurate for ocean environments that match the experiments from which the correlations were developed. For other situations, use of the FRE may lead to depth errors that preclude XBTs as accurate oceanographic devices. Here, a CFD approach has been taken which provides drag coefficients that are used to predict depths independent of an FRE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number567864
JournalModelling and Simulation in Engineering
StatePublished - 2012


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