Lift force and the near wake of an NACA 0012 airfoil were measured over the angle (α) of attack of 0°–90° and the chord Reynolds number (Re c ), 5.3 × 103–5.1 × 104, with a view to understand thoroughly the near wake of the airfoil at low- to ultra-low Re c . While the lift force is measured using a load cell, the detailed flow structure is captured using laser-Doppler anemometry, particle image velocimetry, and laser-induced fluorescence flow visualization. It has been found that the stall of an airfoil, characterized by a drop in the lift force, occurs at Re c ≥ 1.05 × 104 but is absent at Re c = 5.3 × 103. The observation is connected to the presence of the separation bubble at high Re c but absence of the bubble at ultra-low Re c , as evidenced in our wake measurements. The near-wake characteristics are examined and discussed in detail, including the vortex formation length, wake width, spanwise vorticity, wake bubble size, wavelength of K–H vortices, Strouhal numbers, and their dependence on α and Re c .
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 19, 2009
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