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A numerical evaluation of the asymptotic theory of receptivity for subsonic compressible boundary layers

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 April 2015

Nicola De Tullio*
Department of Mathematics, Imperial College London, South Kensington Campus, London SW7 2AZ, UK
Anatoly I. Ruban
Department of Mathematics, Imperial College London, South Kensington Campus, London SW7 2AZ, UK
Email address for correspondence:


The capabilities of the triple-deck theory of receptivity for subsonic compressible boundary layers have been thoroughly investigated through comparisons with numerical simulations of the compressible Navier–Stokes equations. The analysis focused on the two Tollmien–Schlichting wave linear receptivity problems arising due to the interaction between a low-amplitude acoustic wave and a small isolated roughness element, and the low-amplitude time-periodic vibrations of a ribbon placed on the wall of a flat plate. A parametric study was carried out to look at the effects of roughness element and vibrating ribbon longitudinal dimensions, Reynolds number, Mach number and Tollmien–Schlichting wave frequency. The flat plate is considered isothermal, with a temperature equal to the laminar adiabatic-wall temperature. Numerical simulations of the full and the linearised compressible Navier–Stokes equations have been carried out using high-order finite differences to obtain, respectively, the steady basic flows and the unsteady disturbance fields for the different flow configurations analysed. The results show that the asymptotic theory and the Navier–Stokes simulations are in good agreement. The initial Tollmien–Schlichting wave amplitudes and, in particular, the trends indicated by the theory across the whole parameter space are in excellent agreement with the numerical results. An important finding of the present study is that the behaviour of the theoretical solutions obtained for $\mathit{Re}\rightarrow \infty$ holds at finite Reynolds numbers and the only conditions needed for the theoretical predictions to be accurate are that the receptivity process be linear and the free-stream Mach number be subsonic.

© 2015 Cambridge University Press 

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