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Two Dimensional Unsteady Laminar Flow of Power Law Fluids Past a Square Cylinder: A Numerical Study

[+] Author Affiliations
Akhilesh K. Sahu, Raj P. Chhabra, V. Eswaran

Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India

Paper No. IMECE2008-69261, pp. 205-212; 8 pages
  • ASME 2008 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 10: Heat Transfer, Fluid Flows, and Thermal Systems, Parts A, B, and C
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, October 31–November 6, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4871-5 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3840-2
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


The two-dimensional and unsteady flow of power-law fluids past a long square cylinder has been investigated numerically in the range of conditions 60 ≤ Re ≤ 160 and 0.5 ≤ n ≤ 2.0. Over this range of Reynolds numbers, the flow is periodic in time for Newtonian fluids. However, no such information is available for power law fluids. A semi-explicit finite volume method has been used on a non-uniform collocated grid arrangement to solve the governing equations. The macroscopic quantities such as drag coefficients, Strouhal number, lift coefficient as well as the detailed kinematic variables like stream function, vorticity and so on, have been calculated as functions of the pertinent dimension-less groups. In particular, the effects of Reynolds number and of the power-law index have been investigated in the unsteady laminar flow regime. The leading edge separation in shear-thinning fluids produces an increase in drag values with the increasing Reynolds number, while shear-thickening behaviour delays the leading edge separation. So, the drag coefficient in the above-mentioned range of Reynolds number, Re, in shear-thinning fluids (n < 1) initially decreases but at high values of the Reynolds number, it increases. As expected, on the other hand, in case of shear-thickening fluids (n > 1) drag coefficient reduces with Reynolds number, Re. Furthermore, the present results also suggest the transition from steady to unsteady flow conditions to occur at lower Reynolds numbers in shear-thickening fluids than that in Newtonian fluids. Also, the spectra of lift signal for shear-thickening fluids show that the flow is truly periodic in nature with a single dominant frequency in the above range of Reynolds number. In shear-thinning fluids at higher Re, quasi-periodicity sets in with additional frequencies, which indicate the transition from the 2-D to 3-D flows.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME



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