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Full text of "Scientific Papers - Vi"

242                                                  FLUID  MOTIONS                                              [384
They are held back, as Froude pointed out, by friction acting from the walls ; but, on the other hand, when they lag, they are pulled forward by layers farther in which still retain their velocity. If the latter prevail, the motion in the end may not be very different from what would occur in the absence of friction; otherwise an entirely altered motion may ensue. The situation as regards the rest of the fluid is much easier when the layers upon which the friction tells most are allowed to escape. This happens in instruments of the injector class, but I have sometimes wondered whether full advantage is taken of it. The long gradually expanding cones are overdone, perhaps, and the friction which they entail must have a bad effect.
Similar considerations enter when we discuss the passage of a solid body through a large mass of fluid otherwise at rest, as in the case of an airship or submarine boat. I say a submarine, because when a ship moves upon the surface of the water the formation of waves constitutes a complication, and one of great importance when the speed is high. In order that the water in its relative motion may close in properly behind, the after-part of the ship must be suitably shaped, fine lines being more necessary at the stern than at the bow, as fish found out before men interested themselves in the problem. In a well-designed ship the whole resistance (apart from wave-making) may be ascribed to skin friction, of the same nature as that which is encountered when the ship is replaced by a thin plane moving edgeways.
At the other extreme we may consider the motion of a thin disk or blade flatways through the water. Here the actual motion differs altogether from that prescribed. by the classical hydrodynamics, according to which the character of the motion should be the same behind as in front. The liquid refuses to close in behind, and a region of more or less "dead water" is developed, entailing a greatly increased resistance. To meet this Helmholtz, Kirchhoff, and their followers have given calculations in which the fluid behind is supposed to move strictly with the advancing solid, and to be separated from the remainder of the mass by a surface at which a finite slip takes place. Although some difficulties remain, there can be no doubt that this theory constitutes a great advance. But the surface of separation is unstable, and in consequence of fluid friction it soon loses its sharpness, breaking up into more or less periodic eddies, described in some detail by Mallock (fig. 8). It is these eddies which cause the whistling of the wind in trees and the more musical notes of the seolian harp.
The obstacle to the closing-in of the lines of flow behind the disk is doubtless, as before, the layer of liquid in close proximity to the disk, which at the edge has insufficient velocity for what is required of it. It would be an interesting experiment to try what would be the effect of allowing a small "spill." For this purpose the disk or blade would be made double, with a suction applied to the narrow interspace. Relieved of the slowly