Experimental Mechanics

, Volume 50, Issue 9, pp 1367–1372 | Cite as

Locomotory Advantages to Flapping Out of Phase

  • E. KansoEmail author
  • P. K. Newton


The interactions between two fish swimming side by side are examined. An inviscid fluid model is employed to argue that flapping out of phase can lead to locomotory advantages for both fish. Two effects are examined: (a) the effect of the cooperation between the wakes of the two fish in increasing their forward swimming velocities and (b) the effect of the coupling between the lateral oscillations of the fish and the circulations around their bodies in enhancing their forward swimming motion. The models are stripped to their simplest level in order to highlight these effects.


Swimming Dynamics Vorticity 



The authors would like to thank T. Maxworthy for helpful discussions. E.K. would like to acknowledge the support of the National Science Foundation through the CAREER award CMMI 06-44925 and the grants CCF 08-11480 and CMMI 07-57092.


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Copyright information

© Society for Experimental Mechanics 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Aerospace and Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA

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