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Measurement of the lift force on a particle fixed to the wall in the viscous sublayer of a fully developed turbulent boundary layer

  • A. M. Mollinger (a1) (a2) (a3) and F. T. M. Nieuwstadt (a1)


We have investigated the lift force on a small isolated particle which is attached to a flat smooth surface and embedded within the viscous sublayer of the turbulent boundary layer over this surface. We have developed a novel experimental technique with which it is possible to measure both the mean and fluctuating lift force by gluing the particle on top of a silicium cantilever. The deflection of this cantilever is measured with a focused laser beam. The sensitivity of the focus detection system allows us to measure a lift force with an average value around 10−8N and with a standard deviation of approximately 5% of the mean. This means that our device is at least a factor of 100 more sensitive than previous devices and at the same time able to measure the lift forces on smaller particles. Data for the mean lift force (FL+) as a function of the particle radius (a+), where both parameters have been non-dimensionalized with the kinematic viscosity v and the friction velocity u*, are obtained in the range 0.3 < a+ < 2. The data support the relationship: FL+ = (56.9 ± 1.1) (a+)1.87±0.04. Also results on the fluctuating lift force have been obtained. We find that the ratio of the r.m.s. to the mean lift force is approximately 2.8.



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Measurement of the lift force on a particle fixed to the wall in the viscous sublayer of a fully developed turbulent boundary layer

  • A. M. Mollinger (a1) (a2) (a3) and F. T. M. Nieuwstadt (a1)


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