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Large-scale structure and entrainment in the supersonic mixing layer

  • N. T. Clemens (a1) (a2) and M. G. Mungal (a1)

Experiments were conducted in a two-stream planar mixing layer at convective Mach numbers, Mc, of 0.28, 0.42, 0.50, 0.62 and 0.79. Planar laser Mie scattering (PLMS) from a condensed alcohol fog and planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) of nitric oxide were used for flow visualization in the side, plan and end views. The PLIF signals were also used to characterize the turbulent mixture fraction fluctuations.

Visualizations using PLMS indicate a transition in the turbulent structure from quasi-two-dimensionality at low convective Mach number, to more random three-dimensionality for $M_c\geqslant 0.62$. A transition is also observed in the core and braid regions of the spanwise rollers as the convective Mach number increases from 0.28 to 0.62. A change in the entrainment mechanism with increasing compressibility is also indicated by signal intensity profiles and perspective views of the PLMS and PLIF images. These show that at Mc = 0.28 the instantaneous mixture fraction field typically exhibits a gradient in the streamwise direction, but is more uniform in the cross-stream direction. At Mc = 0.62 and 0.79, however, the mixture fraction field is more streamwise uniform and with a gradient in the cross-stream direction. This change in the composition of the structures is indicative of different entrainment motions at the different compressibility conditions. The statistical results are consistent with the qualitative observations and suggest that compressibility acts to reduce the magnitude of the mixture fraction fluctuations, particularly on the high-speed edge of the layer.

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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
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