The effect of streamwise vortices on the turbulence structure of a separating boundary layer
2005 (English)In: European journal of mechanics. B, Fluids, ISSN 0997-7546, E-ISSN 1873-7390, Vol. 24, no 5, 539-554 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
A high Reynolds number flat plate turbulent boundary layer is investigated in a wind-tunnel experiment. The flow is subjected to an adverse pressure gradient which is strong enough to generate a weak separation bubble. This experimental study attempts to shed some new light on separation control by means of streamwise vortices with emphasize on the change in the boundary layer turbulence structure. In the present case, counter-rotating and initially non-equidistant streamwise vortices become and remain equidistant and confined within the boundary layer, contradictory to the prediction by inviscid theory. The viscous diffusion cause the vortices to grow, the swirling velocity component to decrease and the boundary layer to develop towards a two-dimensional state. At the position of the eliminated separation bubble the following changes in the turbulence structure were observed. The anisotropy state in the near-wall region is unchanged, which indicates that it is determined by the presence of the wall rather than the large scale vortices. However, the turbulence in the outer part of the boundary layer becomes overall more isotropic due to an increased wall-normal mixing and a significantly decreased production of streamwise fluctuations. The turbulent kinetic energy is decreased as a consequence of the latter. Despite the complete change in mean flow, the spatial turbulence structure and the anisotropy state, the process of transfer of turbulent kinetic energy to the spanwise fluctuating component seems to be unchanged. Local regions of anisotropy are strongly connected to maxima in the turbulent production. For example, at spanwise positions in between those of symmetry, the spanwise gradient of the streamwise velocity cause significant production of turbulent fluctuations. Transport of turbulence in the spanwise direction occurs in the same direction as the rotation of the vortices.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005. Vol. 24, no 5, 539-554 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-37751DOI: 10.1016/j.euromechflu.2005.01.005ISI: 000230083200001ScopusID: 2-s2.0-19744371142OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-37751DiVA: diva2:435093