Numerical Simulation of Sailing Boats: Dynamics, FSI, and Shape Optimization
The numerical simulation of free-surface flows around sailing boats is a complex topic that addresses multiple mathematical tasks: the correct study of the flow field around a rigid hull, the numerical simulation of the hull dynamics, the deformation of the sails and appendages under transient external conditions like gusts of wind or wave patterns and, overall, the coupling among all these components. In this paper, we present some recent advances that have been achieved in different research topics related to yacht design and performance prediction. In particular, we describe the numerical algorithms that have been developed in the framework of open-source libraries for the simulation of free-surface hydrodynamics and boat dynamics, as well as for the analysis of the fluid-structure interaction between wind and sails. Moreover, an algorithm for shape optimization, based on the solution of the adjoint problem and combined with the Free Form Deformation (FFD) method for the shape parametrization and mesh motion, is presented and discussed. Theoretical and methodological aspects are described and the first preliminary results are reported.