Numerical Simulation of the Wind-Stress Effect on SAR Imagery of Far Wakes of Ships

TitleNumerical Simulation of the Wind-Stress Effect on SAR Imagery of Far Wakes of Ships
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsFujimura, A, Soloviev, A, Kudryavtsev, VN
JournalIEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters
Start Page646 – 649
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
KeywordsHydrodynamics, numerical analysis, Remote sensing, sea surface, synthetic aperture radar (SAR)

Centerline wakes of ships in synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images were modeled in 2-D with the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software Fluent and a radar-imaging algorithm. We initialized the model with a pair of vortices generated by a ship hull and applied wind stress perpendicular to the ship wake. Results of the CFD simulation using a nonhydrostatic model have demonstrated ship-wake asymmetry with respect to the wind-stress direction relative to the ship course. Due to the wind stress, flow convergence increased on the upwind side of the centerline wake and reduced on the downwind side of the wake. The radar-imaging algorithm processed with the surface velocity field produced by the CFD model revealed ship-wake asymme- try relative to the wind direction. These results are qualitatively consistent with SAR images from the TerraSAR-X satellite and representative statistics of photographic images of the ship wake collected from a volunteer observing ship.

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