This paper describes author’s experience with numerical modeling of ship-propeller interaction using the CFD tools of STAR-CCM+. The two numerical approaches considered in the paper are presented by an iterative viscous/potential coupled method, where propeller effect in the main RANS solution is represented by an actuator disk model, which is coupled with an external panel method code for propeller analysis, and an unsteady RANS method, where interaction between the hull and propeller is resolved by a time-accurate Sliding Mesh procedure.
Detailed comparisons with experimental data done for the classical CFD benchmarking case of containership KCS demonstrate that both methods allow for an accurate prediction of self-propulsion point, forces acting on the hull and propeller, and propulsion factors.
The fully unsteady RANS method offers a more accurate and detailed (within the range of scales resolved by RANS) modeling of unsteady effects that influence hull-propeller interaction. The iterative viscous/potential coupled method is, on the other hand, seen as a faster design tool that provides, among other results, the information about effective wake field on propeller. This information is important for the improvement of procedures for wake-adapted propeller design, regarding dynamic blade loads, unsteady cavitation and pressure pulses on the hull.