A Caltech Library Service

Aspects of turbulent-shear-layer dynamics and mixing


Slessor, Michael David (1998) Aspects of turbulent-shear-layer dynamics and mixing. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/K55F-8589.


Experiments have been conducted in the GALCIT Supersonic Shear Layer Facility to investigate some aspects of high-Reynolds-number, turbulent, shearlayer flows in both incompressible- and compressible-flow regimes. Experiments designed to address several issues were performed; effects of inflow boundary conditions, freestream conditions (supersonic/subsonic flow), and compressibility, on both large-scale dynamics and small-scale mixing, are described. Chemically-reacting and non-reacting flows were investigated, the former relying on the (H2 + NO/F2) chemical system, in the fast-kinetic regime, to infer the structure and amount of molecular-scale mixing through use of "flip" experiments. A variety of experimental techniques, including a color-schlieren visualization system developed as part of this work, were used to study the flows. Both inflow conditions and compressibility are found to have significant effects on the flow. In particular, inflow conditions are "remembered" for long distances downstream, a sensitivity similar to that observed in low-dimensionality, non-linear (chaotic) systems. The global flowfields (freestreams coupled by the shear layer) of transonic flows exhibit a sensitivity to imposed boundary conditions, i. e., local area ratios. A previously-proposed mode-selection rule for turbulent-structure convection speeds, based on the presence of a lab-frame subsonic freestream, was experimentally demonstrated to be incorrect. Compressibility, when decoupled from all other parameters, e.g., Reynolds number, velocity and density ratios, etc., reduces laxge-scale entrainment and turbulent growth, but slightly enhances smallscale mixing, with an associated change in the structure of the molecularly-mixed fluid. This reduction in shear-layer growth rate is examined and a new parameter that interprets compressibility as an energy-exchange mechanism is proposed. The parameter reconciles and collapses experimentally-observed growth rates.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Aeronautics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Dimotakis, Paul E.
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:6 March 1998
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-03292005-085835
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:1195
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:29 Mar 2005
Last Modified:20 Dec 2019 19:58

Thesis Files

PDF (Slessor_md_1998.pdf) - Final Version
See Usage Policy.


Repository Staff Only: item control page