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  • Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Volume 518
  • November 2004, pp. 281-317

Numerical simulation of turbulent drag reduction using rigid fibres

  • J. S. PASCHKEWITZ (a1), YVES DUBIEF (a2), COSTAS D. DIMITROPOULOS (a1) (a2), ERIC S. G. SHAQFEH (a1) (a3) and PARVIZ MOIN (a2) (a3)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 20 October 2004

We present a study of the drag reduction induced by rigid fibres in a turbulent channel flow using direct numerical simulation. The extra stresses due to the fibres are calculated with the well-known constitutive equation involving the moments of the orientation vector. Drag reductions of up to 26% are calculated, with the largest drag reductions observed using non-Brownian fibres and semi-dilute concentrations. These findings suggest that elasticity is not necessary to achieve turbulent drag reduction. Flow statistics show trends similar to those observed in simulation of polymeric drag reduction: Reynolds stresses are reduced, velocity fluctuations in the wall-normal and spanwise directions are reduced while streamwise fluctuations are increased, and streamwise vorticity is reduced. We observe strong correlations between the fibre stresses and inter-vortex extensional flow regions. Based on these correlations and instantaneous visualizations of the flow field, we propose a mechanism for turbulent drag reduction by rigid fibre additives.

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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
  • ISSN: 0022-1120
  • EISSN: 1469-7645
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-fluid-mechanics
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