The near-wall flow structures of a turbulent boundary layer over a riblet surface with semi-circular grooves were investigated experimentally for the cases of drag decreasing (s +=25.2) and drag increasing (s +=40.6). One thousand instantaneous velocity fields over riblets were measured using the velocity field measurement technique and compared with those above a smooth flat plate. The field of view was 6.75 × 6.75 mm2 in physical dimension, containing two grooves. Those instantaneous velocity fields were ensemble averaged to get turbulent statistics including turbulent intensities and turbulent kinetic energy. To see the global flow structure qualitatively, flow visualization was also carried out using the synchronized smoke-wire technique under the same experimental conditions. For the case of drag decreasing (s +=25.2), most of the streamwise vortices stay above the riblets, interacting with the riblet tips frequently. The riblet tips impede the spanwise movement of the streamwise vortices and induce secondary vortices. The normalized rms velocity fluctuations and turbulent kinetic energy are small near the riblet surface, compared with those over a smooth flat plate. Inside the riblet valleys, these are sufficiently small that the increased wetted surface area of the riblets can be compensated. In addition, in the outer region (y + > 30), these values are almost equal to or slightly smaller than those for the smooth plate. For the case of drag increasing (s +=40.6), however, most of the streamwise vortices stay inside the riblet valleys and contact directly with the riblet surface. The high-speed down-wash flow penetrating into the riblet valley interacts actively with the wetted riblet surface and increases the skin friction. The rms velocity fluctuations and turbulent kinetic energy have larger values compared with those over a smooth flat plate.
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 6, 2001
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