An experimental investigation into the flow mechanics of dimpled surfaces in turbulent boundary layers

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Although various experimental studies have confirmed the potential drag reducing effect of dimpled surfaces in a turbulent boundary layer, the working mechanism remains largely unresolved. An experimental investigation has been performed with the objective to strengthen the understanding of this aerodynamic surface and its interaction with the turbulent boundary layer. Direct force measurements were combined with Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) and Particle Image Surface Flow Visualization (PISFV). The direct force measurements reveal that the drag reduction is highly sensitive to flow conditions: a finding with significant implications for further research as well as for potential applications. Furthermore, the PIV and PISFV measurements reveal a spanwise oscillation of the flow near the surface due to the interaction of individual dimple flow topologies, which are of the converger-diffuser type. The measurement of this oscillation provides evidence for a novel drag reduction theory: the interaction between dimples causes alternating spanwise excitations of the near-wall flow which interacts with the turbulent coherent structures which leads to a reduction of the turbulent drag.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc. (AIAA)
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781624105241
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventAIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, 2018 - Kissimmee, United States
Duration: 8 Jan 201812 Jan 2018


ConferenceAIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.

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