An 8.2 m high speed boat was modified to measure the drag and to provide real time video of ship hull fouling control coatings under boundary layer conditions that developed at speeds up to 15 m/s. It consists of a through hull Hydrodynamic Drag Meter (HDM) placed in a wet-well built into the aft section of the boat. The HDM consists of a load cell attached to a floating element balance and a high definition video camera to observe fouling. Test panels are attached to the load cell such that they remain flush with the hull. Fouled test panels are placed in the facility to observe the velocities required for fouling removal and changes in drag forces associated with different fouling community structure. Characterization studies of the HDM were undertaken to understand the overall accuracy of the novel testing system. These experiments included 1) Smooth acrylic drag measurement with the HDM and a Preston tube and 2) Drag measurements with the HDM on panels with 60- grit and 220-grit sandpaper. Smooth panel wall shear stress values obtained using the HDM were within experimental uncertainties of results from Preston tube. Roughness function values for 60-grit and 220-grit sandpaper agree within the experimental uncertainty of the Nikuradse-type roughness function for uniform roughness. Skin friction coefficients of a smooth panel determined on the HDM had an experimental uncertainty of around 5% for Froude numbers greater than 1. Roughness function values for a 220-grit and 60-grit sandpaper surface had maximum uncertainties of 11% and 13% respectively.

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