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Dynamics of inertial particles in a turbulent von Kármán flow

  • R. VOLK (a1), E. CALZAVARINI (a1), E. LÉVÊQUE (a1) and J.-F. PINTON (a1)

We study the dynamics of neutrally buoyant particles with diameters varying in the range [1, 45] in Kolmogorov scale units (η) and Reynolds numbers based on Taylor scale (Reλ) between 590 and 1050. One component of the particle velocity is measured using an extended laser Doppler velocimetry at the centre of a von Kármán flow, and acceleration is derived by differentiation. We find that the particle acceleration variance decreases with increasing diameter with scaling close to (D/η)−2/3, in agreement with previous observations, and with a hint for an intermittent correction as suggested by arguments based on scaling of pressure spatial increments. The characteristic time of acceleration autocorrelation increases more strongly than previously reported in other experiments, and possibly varying linearly with D/η. Further analysis shows that the probability density functions of the acceleration have smaller wings for larger particles; their flatness decreases as well, as expected from the behaviour of pressure increments in turbulence when intermittency corrections are taken into account. We contrast our measurements with previous observations in wind-tunnel turbulent flows and numerical simulations.

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