The Near-Wake of Super-Critical Discrete Roughness Elements on Swept Wings

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The present work details the steady and unsteady flow topology in the vicinity of an array of periodically spaced super-critical (i.e. causing flow tripping) discrete roughness elements (DRE) applied in a swept wing boundary layer. The stationary flow field is acquired by means of high-magnification dual-pulse tomographic particle tracking velocimetry (3D-PTV), while the unsteady instabilities are investigated through high-resolution hot wire anemometry (HWA). The 3D-PTV time-averaged velocity fields, indicate that the near-element flow region is dominated by the alternation of high- and low-speed streaks. A high-speed region substitutes the wake development shortly downstream of the DRE location, due to the high-speed streaks merging. This initiates a region of strong unsteady fluctuations that expands in the spanwise and wall-normal directions, ultimately leading to the boundary layer transition to turbulence. The spectral content of the stationary flow structures is investigated through a spanwise spatial Fourier transform. The extracted spectra and instability amplitudes, indicate the presence of non-modal mechanisms in the near-element stationary wake region. Nonetheless, the temporal spectral analysis of the HWA velocity signal, identifies the presence of strongly tonal shedding mechanisms initiating and the unsteady instabilities the element vicinity. Their rapid downstream growth and evolution retains a fundamental role in the transitional process.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAIAA SciTech Forum 2023
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-62410-699-6
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventAIAA SCITECH 2023 Forum - National Harbor, MD & Online, Washington, United States
Duration: 23 Jan 202327 Jan 2023


ConferenceAIAA SCITECH 2023 Forum
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address


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