Avoiding Cavitation Damage to Hydraulic Structures

by Wallis S. Hamilton, Northwestern Univ, Evanston, IL, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Water for Resource Development


Cavitation damage often may be avoided by not allowing cavities to form. Where boundaries are not deeply submerged, their shape must be exactly correct, irregularities must be very small, and velocities must be moderate. When cavitation-free design is not possible, damage may be avoided or mitigated by (a) inventing a flow configuration that prevents cavities from collapsing against solid boundaries; (b) using damage-resistant materials when cavity-producing flows are infrequent; (c) arranging that water next to boundaries where cavities will form contain entrained air. Air bubbles influence cavity growth and collapse and eliminate or reduce damage to metals and concrete.

Subject Headings: Cavitation | Hydraulic structures | Damage (material) | Domain boundary | Material failures | Hydraulic design | Damage (structural)

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