Are you watching the Humpback whales? These days we can all attest to the agility and great maneuverability of these whales as as they give us their mating shows in the waters off the islands' shores. What you may not know is that the humpback whale's superior aerodynamic performance may be attributed to the scallops on the edges of their fins. They are the only species to have these scallops. A student in Mechanical Engineering, Hugo Pedro, used Tempest, a supercomputer at MHPCC, to perform fluid dynamics calculations with FLUENT, to show why. The scalloped edges create vortices along the flippers that keep the flow from separating from the flipper at higher angles of attack.
These results may be important in designing small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that operate at similar Reynolds numbers. Read more about Hugo's Engagement Grant Project or read the paper he published with his advisor, Prof. Marcelo Kobayashi, "Numerical Study of stall delay on humpback whale flippers," 46th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit, 7-10 January, 2008, Reno, Nevada.
Graduate student Yang Yang modeled the complex weather phenomena over the island of Hawai'i during the Hawaii Rainband Project (HaRP), a period in 1990 when researchers collected data on the rainfall and associated weather patterns around the island. He used the fifth generation of the Penn State-National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Mesoscale Model (MM5) version 1 software on the MHPCC supercomputer. He went on to receive his Ph.D. at UH Manoa based on this work. Read the article on the work that he submitted to the Monthly Weather Review.
Tips for completing a NAC - National Agency Check - SF 85P
To obtain an account on JAWS, the 11th fastest supercomputer in the world, you have to take a few extra steps. In addition to applying for an account, you must complete an SF 85P, National Agency Check and submit it to the proper authorities. Following these tips will help you sail through the process with as little hassle as possible!