The flow in a uniform square cross-sectioned, S-shaped duct was investigated experimentally, at Reynolds number (Re) = 4.73 × 104 and 1.47 × 105, using three S-ducts of different curvature and turning angle. The hydraulic diameter (D) for each S-duct is 150 mm. Besides studying the square cross-sectioned S-duct flow at moderately higher Re than current literature, the S-ducts’ geometry used in this study also have larger curvatures and higher turning angles than those reported in the literature. With surface pressure measurement and smoke wire flow visualization, flow separation at the inside wall of the first bend was detected. Using surface oil flow visualization on the bottom wall of the S-duct and cross-wires measurement at the duct exit, it is shown here that the swirl developed in the first bend was partly attenuated in the second bend due to the formation of swirl of opposite direction. The swirl of an opposite sign results in the formation of a clear dividing or separation line on the bottom wall (and top wall) of the duct. Additional flow features include the formation of streamwise vortices on the outer-wall of the second bend. These streamwise vortices can either be a pair of counter-rotating vortices or a single vortex. The formation mechanism of these streamwise vortices is explained using the Squire and Winter [J Aeronaut Sci 18(4):271–277, 1951] formula and it is shown that the said mechanism is applicable to both Re in the present study.
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 18, 2006
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