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CFD simulation of flow around a single kiwifruit flower

Hii, M.J.W., Abrahamson, J., Jordan, P.J.
Acta horticulturae 2003 no.610 pp. 479-487
air, air flow, flowers, kiwifruit, models, orchards, pollen, pollination, quantitative analysis, stigma
Pollination by using air jets offers flexibility in timing and other advantages, and is becoming increasingly popular in the kiwifruit industry. A quantitative analysis of the parameters affecting collection of pollen by flowers from the air is expected to be valuable to improve the pollination efficiency. A commercially available computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code is used here to simulate the 3-dimensional air flow field around a kiwifruit flower. The volume around the complex flower geometry at different bud opening stages is divided (“meshed”) using an unstructured grid. Due to the large ratio of the biggest to the smallest dimensions of the flower components, both laminar and turbulent models have been used. The flow solutions from these models are compared in the air velocity range measured in kiwifruit orchards and at various flow-attacking angles. Inertial collection of pollen by the stigma from normally loaded orchard air is found to be inadequate to achieve satisfactory pollination, confirming general experience.