Frictional drag measurements of large-scale plates in an enhanced plane channel flowcell

Serkan Turkmen, Mehmet Atlar, Irma Yeginbayeva, Simon Benson, John A Finlay, Anthony S. Clare

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
13 Downloads (Pure)


This paper describes the design of an enhanced, plane channel, flowcell and its use for testing large-scale coated plates (0.6 m 0.22 m) in fully developed flow, over a wide range of Reynolds numbers, with low uncertainty. Two identical, hydraulically smooth plates were experimentally tested. Uniform biofilms were grown on clean surfaces to test skin friction changes resulting from different biofilm thickness and densities. A velocity survey of the flowcell measurement section, using laser Doppler anemometry, showed a consistent velocity profile and low turbulence intensity in the central flow channel. The skin friction coefficient was experimentally determined using a pressure drop method. Results correlate closely to previously published regression data, particularly at higher speeds. Repeated measurements indicated very low uncertainty. This study demonstrates this flowcell’s applicability for representing consistent frictional drag of ship hull surfaces, enabling comparability of hydrodynamic drag caused by surface roughness to the reference surface measurements.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-182
Number of pages14
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020


  • hydrodynamic drag
  • biofouling
  • skin friction curves
  • calibration
  • turbulent flow channel
  • flowcell


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