Research in Engineering and Aviation

Analysis of Transition-Sensitized Turbulent Transport Equations

January 2005

Author(s): Rumsey, C.L., Thacker, W.D., Gatski, T.B., Grosch, C.E.,

American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Paper 2005-0523, presented at the 43rd AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, January 10-13 2005, Reno NV.


The dynamics of an ensemble of linear disturbances in boundary-layer flows at various Reynolds numbers is studied through an analysis of the transport equations for the mean disturbance kinetic energy and energy dissipation rate. Effects of adverse and favorable pressure-gradients on the disturbance dynamics are also included in the analysis. Unlike the fully turbulent regime where nonlinear phase scrambling of the fluctuations affects the flow field even in proximity to the wall, the early stage transition regime fluctuations studied here are influenced across the boundary layer by the solid boundary. The dominating dynamics in the disturbance kinetic energy and dissipation rate equations are described. These results are then used to formulate transitionsensitized turbulent transport equations, which are solved in a two-step process and applied to zero-pressuregradient flow over a flat plate. Computed results are in good agreement with experimental data. I.