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:3/6/2017)... MATEO, Calif. , March 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... marketing and sales technology, today announced Predictive Sales ... solution for infusing actionable sales intelligence into Salesforce. ... to automatically enable their sales organizations with deep ... messages that allow for intelligent engagement. Predictive Sales ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... Summary This report provides all the information ... partnering interests and activities since 2010. Download the ... Deals and Alliance since 2010 report provides an in-depth ... world,s leading life sciences companies. On demand ... of the most up to date deal and company ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... , March 2, 2017 Australian stem ... (ASX: CYP), has signed an agreement with the ... the Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute and Department of Pharmacology ... conduct a further preclinical study to support the use ... of asthma.  Asthma is a chronic, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/29/2017)... ... , ... Bactana Animal Health, a company developing natural products aimed at reducing ... the gut microbiota, today announced the closing of its first round of funding. ... Capital Management, LLC and a number of private investors. The company will use the ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... NEWARK, Del. , March 29, 2017 ... medicine company, and W. L. Gore & ... announced a collaborative research agreement whereby the two companies ... delivery device technologies that provide protection from immune rejection. ... has been developing innovative stem cell-derived cell replacement therapies ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... TORONTO , March 29, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -  GeneNews Limited ... of BreastSentry™ , a new risk stratification test for ... reference lab, Innovative Diagnostics Laboratory ("IDL"). BreastSentry incorporates a blood-based ... five-year and lifetime risk for developing breast cancer.   ... BreastSentry measures ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... The Global Microfluidic Chips Market by Manufacturers, Countries, Type ... study on the existing state of the global Microfluidic Chips industry ... and Asia-Pacific , South ... Africa . ... Browse 172 Tables and Figures, 13 Major Company Profiles, spread ...
Breaking Biology Technology: