The Role of Vortex Stretching In Turbulence Modeling

  • Peter S. Bernard
  • Siva Thangam
  • Charles G. Speziale
Conference paper
Part of the ICASE NASA LaRC Series book series (ICASE/NASA)


Traditional models for the turbulent dissipation rate assume an equilibrium in which the production by vortex stretching is exactly balanced by the leading order part of the viscous destruction term. In the present study, the effect of allowing for unbalanced vortex stretching is explored in an effort to describe departures from equilibrium. It is found that the presence of a small unbalanced vortex stretching term has a number of profound consequences for the calculation of isotropic decay, homogeneous shear flow, and more complex turbulent shear flows with separation. In the case of isotropic decay it accounts for enstrophy blow-up in the limit of zero viscosity, while for homogeneous shear flow it predicts a production-equals- dissipation equilibrium at large times instead of an unbounded exponential growth of turbulent kinetic energy. Preliminary calculations for turbulent flow over a backward facing step indicate that even a minute imbalance in vortex stretching can have a major influence on the reattachment length.


Turbulent Kinetic Energy Isotropic Turbulence Reattachment Point Turbulence Shear Stress Reattachment Length 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York, Inc. 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter S. Bernard
    • 1
  • Siva Thangam
    • 2
    • 3
  • Charles G. Speziale
    • 2
  1. 1.University of MarylandUSA
  2. 2.ICASENASA Langley Research CenterHamptonUSA
  3. 3.Stevens Institute of TechnologyHobokenUSA

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