Skip to main content Accessibility help

On the departure of near-wall turbulence from the quasi-steady state

  • Lionel Agostini (a1) and Michael Leschziner (a1)


An examination is undertaken of the validity and limitations of the quasi-steady hypothesis of near-wall turbulence. This hypothesis is based on the supposition that the statistics of the turbulent fluctuations are universal if scaled by the local, instantaneous, wall shear when its variations are determined from footprints of large-scale, energetic, structures that reside in the outer part of the logarithmic layer. The examination is performed with the aid of direct numerical simulation data for a single Reynolds number, which are processed in a manner that brings out the variability of locally scaled statistics when conditioned on the local value of the wall friction. The key question is to what extent this variability is insignificant, thus reflecting universality. It is shown that the validity of the quasi-steady hypothesis is confined, at best, to a thin layer above the viscous sublayer. Beyond this layer, substantial variations in the conditioned shear-induced production rate of large-scale turbulence cause substantial departures from the hypothesis. Even within the wall-proximate layer, moderate departures are provoked by large-scale distortions in the conditioned strain rate that result in variations in small-scale production of turbulence down to the viscous sublayer.


Corresponding author

Email address for correspondence:


Hide All
Agostini, L. & Leschziner, M. 2014 On the influence of outer large-scale structures on near-wall turbulence in channel flow. Phys. Fluids 26 (7), 075107.
Agostini, L. & Leschziner, M. 2016 On the validity of the quasi-steady-turbulence hypothesis in representing the effects of large scales on small scales in boundary layers. Phys. Fluids 28 (4), 045102.10.1063/1.4944735
Agostini, L. & Leschziner, M. 2018 The impact of footprints of large-scale outer structures on the near-wall layer in the presence of drag-reducing spanwise wall motion. Flow Turbul. Combust. 100, 10371061.10.1007/s10494-018-9917-3
Agostini, L. & Leschziner, M. 2019 The connection between the spectrum of turbulent scales and the skin-friction statistics in channel flow at Re 𝜏 ≈ 1000. J. Fluid Mech. (submitted), doi:10.13140/RG.2.2.35023.53924.
Banerjee, S., Krahl, R., Durst, F. & Zenger, C. 2007 Presentation of anisotropy properties of turbulence, invariants versus eigenvalue approaches. J. Turbul. 8, N32.
Huang, N. E., Shen, Z., Long, S. R., Wu, M. C., Shih, H. H., Zheng, Q., Yen, N.-C., Tung, C. C. & Liu, H. H. 1998 The empirical mode decomposition and the Hilbert spectrum for nonlinear and non-stationary time series analysis. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. A 454 (1971), 903995.10.1098/rspa.1998.0193
Lozano-Durán, A. & Jiménez, J. 2014 Effect of the computational domain on direct simulations of turbulent channels up to Re 𝜏 = 4200. Phys. Fluids 26 (1), 011702.10.1063/1.4862918
Mathis, R., Hutchins, N. & Marusic, I. 2011 A predictive inner–outer model for streamwise turbulence statistics in wall-bounded flows. J. Fluid Mech. 681, 537566.10.1017/jfm.2011.216
Zhang, C. & Chernyshenko, S. I. 2016 Quasisteady quasihomogeneous description of the scale interactions in near-wall turbulence. Phys. Rev. Fluids 1 (1), 014401.10.1103/PhysRevFluids.1.014401
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Fluid Mechanics
  • ISSN: 0022-1120
  • EISSN: 1469-7645
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-fluid-mechanics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *

JFM classification


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed