Warning: session_start(): open(/var/cpanel/php/sessions/ea3/sess_10fe41003354ab0345cdd7ca4161b35c, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in /home/virtual/public_html/session.php on line 1

Warning: session_start(): Cannot send session cache limiter - headers already sent (output started at /home/virtual/public_html/session.php:1) in /home/virtual/public_html/session.php on line 1
VWN News: Figuring Out Flow Dynamics
Untitled Document
Not a member yet? Register for full benefits!

 Figuring Out Flow Dynamics

This story is from the category Graphics
Printer Friendly Version
Email to a Friend (currently Down)



Date posted: 31/07/2013

Since 2006, Beverley McKeon, professor of aeronautics and associate director of the Graduate Aerospace Laboratories at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and collaborator Ati Sharma, a senior lecturer in aerodynamics and flight mechanics at the University of Southampton in the U.K., have been working together to build models of turbulent flow. Recently, they developed a new and improved way of looking at the composition of turbulence near walls, the type of flow that dominates our everyday life.

Their research could lead to significant fuel savings, as a large amount of energy is consumed by ships and planes, for example, to counteract turbulence-induced drag. Finding a way to reduce that turbulence by 30 percent would save the global economy billions of dollars in fuel costs and associated emissions annually, says McKeon, a coauthor of a study describing the new method published online in the Journal of Fluid Mechanics on July 8.

"This kind of turbulence is responsible for a large amount of the fuel that is burned to move humans, freight, and fluids such as water, oil, and natural gas, around the world," she says. "[Caltech physicist Richard] Feynman described turbulence as 'one of the last unsolved problems of classical physics,' so it is also a major academic challenge."

Wall turbulence develops when fluids—liquid or gas—flow past solid surfaces at anything but the slowest flow rates. Progress in understanding and controlling wall turbulence has been somewhat incremental because of the massive range of scales of motion involved—from the width of a human hair to the height of a multi-floor building in relative terms—says McKeon, who has been studying turbulence for 16 years. Her latest work, however, now provides a way of analyzing a large-scale flow by breaking it down into discrete, more easily analyzed bits.

McKeon and Sharma devised a new method of looking at wall turbulence by reformulating the equations that govern the motion of fluids—called the Navier-Stokes equations—into an infinite set of smaller, simpler subequations, or "blocks," with the characteristic that they can be simply added together to introduce more complexity and eventually get back to the full equations. But the benefit comes in what can be learned without needing the complexity of the full equations. Calling the results from analysis of each one of those blocks a "response mode," the researchers have shown that commonly observed features of wall turbulence can be explained by superposing, or adding together, a very small number of these response modes, even as few as three.

See the full Story via external site: www.caltech.edu

Most recent stories in this category (Graphics):

07/02/2017: Complex 3D data on all devices

06/05/2014: U-M paleontologists unveil online showcase of 3-D fossil remains

17/03/2014: 3D X-ray Film: Rapid Movements in Real Time

07/02/2014: Modelling the Duynamics of the Skin

20/01/2014: CCNY Team Models Sudden Thickening of Complex Fluids

12/11/2013: Visualizing the past: Nondestructive imaging of ancient fossils

14/08/2013: Shadows and light: Dartmouth researchers develop new software to detect forged photos

05/08/2013: Seeing depth through a single lens

Warning: Unknown: open(/var/cpanel/php/sessions/ea3/sess_10fe41003354ab0345cdd7ca4161b35c, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in Unknown on line 0

Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct (/var/cpanel/php/sessions/ea3) in Unknown on line 0