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Experimental and Numerical Investigation of Turbulent High Reynolds Number Flows in a Square Duct With 90-Degree Streamwise Curvature: Part 1 — Experiment

[+] Author Affiliations
Faustin Ondore

QinetiQ, Salisbury, UK

Paper No. FEDSM2003-45585, pp. 1077-1093; 17 pages
  • ASME/JSME 2003 4th Joint Fluids Summer Engineering Conference
  • Volume 1: Fora, Parts A, B, C, and D
  • Honolulu, Hawaii, USA, July 6–10, 2003
  • Conference Sponsors: Fluids Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3696-7 | eISBN: 0-7918-3673-8
  • Copyright © 2003 by ASME


This study was aimed at obtaining a better understanding of turbulent flows in a square duct with a 90° bend, using both experimental and numerical techniques. Turbulent flows that are subjected to streamwise curvature occur in numerical engineering applications. These flows are known to experience extra rates of strain in the plane of mean shear in comparison to plane flows. Hence the gross parameters, such as the mean flow velocities, turbulence intensities and Reynolds stresses are altered dramatically from the plane flow characteristics. The flows examined are specified by the free-stream entry velocities of 12.3 m/s and 20.4 m/s measured at 1.01 duct height upstream of the bend entry plane. These velocities correspond to Reynolds numbers 3.56 × 105 and 6.43 × 105 respectively. The duct has a cross-section of 0.457 × 0.457 m 2 and the mean radius of curvature to duct height ratio is 1:21. Airflow from a wind tunnel passes through an upstream tangent of 1.31 duct height before entering the bend. The flow then exits the bend into a 7.0 duct height downstream tangent before discharging into the atmosphere. The experimental part involved hot-wire measurements. Flow visualisation was performed by smoke in a region close to the convex wall at the bend exit to confirm the numerical prediction of recirculating flow in that area. The numerical part of the investigation was based on the solution of the governing differential equations for turbulent flows in conjunction with a number of turbulence models. The discretisation of the equations was achieved using a finite-volume technique and different discretisation schemes. The main turbulence model used for the study was the Reynolds Stress Model, but the comparisons of the results were also made with those from the standard κ-ε and the RNG-κ-ε turbulence models. The boundary conditions for these simulations were obtained as part of the experimental investigations. Numerical calculations with the Reynolds stress models show a separated flow near the convex wall starting at the bend exit, which was confirmed by experiment using flow visualisation by smoke. The Reynolds stress models are observed to be superior in comparison with the standard κ-ε and the RNG-κ-ε turbulence models in terms of accuracy. Further conclusions from this work can be summarised as: 1. The proper numerical resolution of this type of flow is dependent on the turbulence model formulations as well as numerical procedures. The results highlight the limitations of the generality of turbulence models when used to model more intricate features of complex flows. 2. The need for more accurate experimental techniques in support of improvement of turbulence models is thus underlined.

Copyright © 2003 by ASME



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