Aerodynamics and rain rivulet suppression of bridge cables with concave fillets

Celeste Burlina, Christos T. Georgakis, Søren Vestergaard Larsen, Philipp Egger

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


In this paper, the aerodynamic performance of two new cable surfaces with concave fillets (strakes) is examined and compared to plain, dimpled and helically filleted surfaces. To this end, an extensive wind-tunnel campaign was undertaken. Different samples with different concave fillet heights for both new surfaces were tested and compared to traditional surfaces in terms of aerodynamic forces (i.e. drag and lift reduction) and rain-rivulet suppression. Furthermore, flow visualization tests were performed to investigate the flow separation mechanism induced by the presence of the concave fillet and its relation to the aerodynamic forces. Both new cable surfaces outperformed the traditional surfaces in terms of rain-rivulet suppression thanks to the ability of the concave shape of the fillet to act as a ramp for the incoming rain-rivulet. Furthermore, both new surfaces with the lowest tested fillet height were found to have drag coefficients in the supercritical Reynolds range that compare favorably to existing cable surfaces, with an early suppression of vortex shedding.
Original languageEnglish
JournalWind & Structures
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)253-266
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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