Experiments are reported on intermittent swimming motions. Water tunnel experiments on a nominally two-dimensional pitching foil show that the mean thrust and power scale linearly with the duty cycle, from a value of 0.2 all the way up to continuous motions, indicating that individual bursts of activity in intermittent motions are independent of each other. This conclusion is corroborated by particle image velocimetry (PIV) flow visualizations, which show that the main vortical structures in the wake do not change with duty cycle. The experimental data also demonstrate that intermittent motions are generally energetically advantageous over continuous motions. When metabolic energy losses are taken into account, this conclusion is maintained for metabolic power fractions less than 1.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computational Mechanics
- Mechanical Engineering
- Burst and coast
- Unsteady propulsion