Experimental and Theoretical Studies of the Three-Dimensional Boundary-Layer Transition
The aim of the investigation, which consists of experiment, theory and numerical simulation, is to better understand, predict and finally control the transition to turbulence in boundary-layer flows. The origins of turbulent flow and the transition to turbulence are dominated by a sequence of instabilities, which leads to a three-dimensional breakdown of the laminar flows. When a laminar boundary layer is three-dimensional in the very first stable regime, it exhibits a transition behavior which is quite different to that of any twodimensional flow. Therefore, - apart from the practical importance in aerodynamics with emphasis on the design of energy-efficient airfoils - an investigation of such inherent three-dimensional phenomena is an extra challenging field in fluid mechanics. Physical modelling of these phenomena requires, in the first stage, the simplification of some three-dimensional complex flow configuration to such a flow that is accessible to direct comparison between experiment, theory and numerical simulation but one which preserves the inherent three-dimensional effects which first appear in swept-wing boundary-layer flows. In the following we summarize such experimental, theoretical and numerical investigations. Details are given in the literature cited.
KeywordsReynolds Number AIAA Paper Stationary Vortex Secondary Instability Linear Stability Theory
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