A spatially distributed Leading Edge Vortex (LEV) model is proposed in this paper to simulate the 3-dimensional boundary layer flow past a hydrofoil. It is a coupled viscous/inviscid method combining the Boundary Element Method (BEM) and the VIScous Vorticity Equation (VISVE) method, in the sense that the viscous results work as corrections on top of the inviscid results. The distributed LEV model allows every panel on the wall to release vorticity into the flow field as opposed to the discrete LEV model with a prescribed detachment point. Whether, where and how much vorticity is produced from the wall are determined by the instantaneous flow state. The distributed LEV model was applied in the case of 3D hydrofoils at an angle. The vorticity and velocity in the flow field is obtained and analyzed. The results from VISVE are compared with that from Navier-Stokes’ methods (N-S). Calculated results provided good agreement, which addressed the detachment problem. As a result, VISVE is proved to be quite reliable and efficient.
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