Improving a Low Profile Dredge Using Computational Fluid Dynamics and Flume Tank Testing

Output from the computational fluid dynamics simulation showing (A) the vortex contours for the original low profile dredges and (B) the vortex contours for the redesigned low profile dredge.

Project Title: Improving a Low Profile Dredge Using Computational Fluid Dynamics and Flume Tank Testing

Year: 2017

Principle Investigators: Liese Siemann, Farrell Davis

Client: NOAA/NMFS Atlantic Sea Scallop Research Set-Aside Program

Our main objective will be developing an improved low profile dredge design based on flume tank testing and computer simulation results. We plan to (1) simulate the performance of different dredge configurations using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models, (2) develop a modular scaled dredge to examine the impacts of changing the geometries of scallop dredges, and (3) test the scaled dredge in multiple configurations in a flume tank at scaled speeds that match realistic fishing speeds. We will use SOLIDWORKS to design dredge variants and run CFD simulations. Simulations for a range of speeds will be conducted for each dredge variant. We will design and build a modular scaled dredge that will fish at scaled speeds that approximate realistic fishing speeds. Once the modular scaled dredge is tested in the flume tank, results for the CFD simulations and the flume tank testing will be used to modify the LPD for future at-sea testing. We are confident that this process will result in an improved dredge that will catch scallops at the same rate as current commercial dredges while reducing bycatch of non-target species like yellowtail and windowpane flounder and small scallops.