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An investigation of turbulent plane Couette flow at low Reynolds numbers

  • Knut H. Bech (a1), Nils Tillmark (a2), P. Henrik Alfredsson (a2) and Helge I. Andersson (a1)

Abstract

The turbulent structure in plane Couette flow at low Reynolds numbers is studied using data obtained both from numerical simulation and physical experiments. It is shown that the near-wall turbulence structure is quite similar to what has earlier been found in plane Poiseuille flow; however, there are also some large differences especially regarding Reynolds stress production. The commonly held view that the maximum in Reynolds stress close to the wall in Poiseuille and boundary layer flows is due to the turbulence-generating events must be modified as plane Couette flow does not exhibit such a maximum, although the near-wall coherent structures are quite similar. For two-dimensional mean flow, turbulence production occurs only for the streamwise fluctuations, and the present study shows the importance of the pressure—strain redistribution in connection with the near-wall coherent events.

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