Navigation Links
Dolphins get a lift from delta wing technology
Date:6/25/2009

We can only marvel at the way that dolphins, whales and porpoises scythe through water. Their finlike flippers seem perfectly adapted for maximum aquatic agility. However, no one had ever analysed how the animals' flippers interact with water; the hydrodynamic lift that they generate, the drag that they experience or their hydrodynamic efficiency. Laurens Howle and Paul Weber from Duke University teamed up with Mark Murray from the United States Naval Academy and Frank Fish from West Chester University, to find out more about the hydrodynamics of whale and dolphin flippers. They publish their finding that some dolphins' fins generate lift in the same way as delta wing aircraft on 26 June 2009 in The Journal of Experimental Biology at http://jeb.biologists.org .

Using Computer tomography scanning of the fins of seven different species ranging from the slow swimming Amazon River dolphin and pygmy sperm whale to the super-fast striped dolphin, the team made scaled models of the flippers of each species. Then they measured the lift and drag experienced by the flipper at inclinations ranging from -45deg. to +45deg. in a flow tunnel running at a speed that would have been the equivalent of 2m/s for the full scale fin.

Comparing the lift and drag coefficients that the team calculated for each flipper at different inclination angles, they found that the flippers behave like modern engineered aerofoils. Defining the flippers' shapes as triangular, swept pointed or swept rounded, the team used computer simulations of the fluid flows around the flippers and found that sweptback flippers generate lift like modern delta wing aircraft. Calculating the flippers' efficiencies, the team found that the bottle nose dolphin's triangular flippers are the most efficient while the harbour porpoise and Atlantic white-sided dolphin's fins were the least efficient.

Commenting that environmental and performance factors probably play a significant role in the evolution of dolphin and whale flipper shapes and their hydrodynamics, Howle and his colleagues are keen to find out more about the link between the flippers' performances and the environment that whales and dolphins negotiate on a daily basis.


'/>"/>

Contact: Kathryn Knight
kathryn@biologists.com
44-122-342-5525
The Company of Biologists
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Migrating squid drove evolution of sonar in whales and dolphins, researchers argue
2. Mercury contamination found in stranded Victorian dolphins
3. Killer whales, blind bats, discriminating dolphins, mating birds
4. Whales and dolphins influence new wind turbine design
5. Grays Paradox solved: Researchers discover secret of speedy dolphins
6. Dolphins maintain round-the-clock visual vigilance
7. Time (and PPAR-beta/delta) heals all wounds
8. River delta areas can provide clue to environmental changes, Texas A&M prof says
9. River delta areas can provide clue to environmental changes, Texas A&M prof says
10. Yale scientists use nanotechnology to fight E. coli
11. Voice Biometrics Gains Traction as Most Accurate and Convenient Technology to Secure Customer Privacy
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/2/2016)... Feb. 2, 2016  BioMEMS devices deployed ... focused on medical screening and diagnostic applications, ... Wearable devices that facilitate and assure continuous ... movement are being bolstered through new opportunities ... signal acquisition coupled with wireless connectivity and ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... 2, 2016 Technology Enhancements Accelerate Growth of X-ray ... the digital and computed radiography markets in ... Indonesia (TIM). It provides an ... as well as regional market drivers and restraints. The ... penetration and market attractiveness, both for digital and computed ...
(Date:2/1/2016)... , February 1, 2016 Rising ... to drive global touchfree intuitive gesture control market ... Rising sales of consumer electronics coupled with new ... market size through 2020   ... coupled with new technological advancements to drive global touchfree ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/8/2016)... DELHI , February 8, 2016 ... Invictus Oncology Private Limited, an innovation-driven oncology company ... effective and less toxic, today announced that chairman ... Tata, has invested in the company as part ... financing round, joining existing investors Navam Capital and ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... Bulk food ... bulk foods at various stages of the production process. Despite frequently inspecting loose ... bulk products post packaging such as sacks of dry powders. , Mettler-Toledo Product ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... February 8, 2016 ... or the "Company"), the ultra-rapid Point-Of-Care (POC) molecular diagnostics company, ... its Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) test to be launched on the ... Directive (98/79/EC), the CT test is now cleared for sale ... --> The launch of the io® CT test signals ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... , Feb. 5, 2016 On Thursday, ... trusted information source for community, health and disaster services, ... will integrate to enhance care coordination and service ... the services they need and to better connect service ... care.   San Diego has ...
Breaking Biology Technology: