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The effects of flow topology on the subgrid-scale (SGS) kinetic energy flux in compressible isotropic turbulence is studied. The eight flow topological types based on the three invariants of the filtered velocity gradient tensor are analysed at different scales, along with their roles in the magnitude and direction of kinetic energy transfer. The unstable focus/compressing (UFC), unstable node/saddle/saddle (UN/S/S) and stable focus/stretching (SFS), are the three predominant topological types at all scales; they account for at least 75 % of the flow domain. The UN/S/S and SFS types make major contributions to the average SGS flux of the kinetic energy from large scales to small scales in the inertial range. The unstable focus/stretching (UFS) topology makes a contribution to the reverse SGS flux of kinetic energy from small scales to large scales. In strong compression regions, the average contribution of the stable node/saddle/saddle (SN/S/S) topology to the SGS kinetic energy flux is positive and is predominant over those of other flow topologies. In strong expansion regions, the UFS topology makes a major contribution to the reverse SGS flux of the kinetic energy. As the turbulent Mach number increases, the increase of volume fraction of the UFS topological regions leads to the increase of the SGS backscatter of kinetic energy. The SN/S/S topology makes a dominant contribution to the direct SGS flux of the compressible component of the kinetic energy, while the UFS topology makes a dominant contribution to the reverse SGS flux of the compressible component of the kinetic energy.
Cascades of temperature and entropy fluctuations are studied by numerical simulations of stationary three-dimensional compressible turbulence with a heat source. The fluctuation spectra of velocity, compressible velocity component, density and pressure exhibit the $-5/3$ scaling in an inertial range. The strong acoustic equilibrium relation between spectra of the compressible velocity component and pressure is observed. The $-5/3$ scaling behaviour is also identified for the fluctuation spectra of temperature and entropy, with the Obukhov–Corrsin constants close to that of a passive scalar spectrum. It is shown by Kovasznay decomposition that the dynamics of the temperature field is dominated by the entropic mode. The average subgrid-scale (SGS) fluxes of temperature and entropy normalized by the total dissipation rates are close to 1 in the inertial range. The cascade of temperature is dominated by the compressible mode of the velocity field, indicating that the theory of a passive scalar in incompressible turbulence is not suitable to describe the inter-scale transfer of temperature in compressible turbulence. In contrast, the cascade of entropy is dominated by the solenoidal mode of the velocity field. The different behaviours of cascades of temperature and entropy are partly explained by the geometrical properties of SGS fluxes. Moreover, the different effects of local compressibility on the SGS fluxes of temperature and entropy are investigated by conditional averaging with respect to the filtered dilatation, demonstrating that the effect of compressibility on the cascade of temperature is much stronger than on the cascade of entropy.
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