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Many swimming microorganisms are able to propel themselves by the organized beating motion of numerous short flagella or cilia attached to their body surface. For their small size and the inherently viscous nature of the motion, this mechanism is very effective and they can swim several body lengths per second. The quest has been to see if artificial cilia may be developed and if the strategy of cilia propulsion can be used in microfluidic devices to transport fluids in a localized and controllable manner. Babataheri et al. (J. Fluid Mech., this issue, vol. 678, 2011, pp. 5–13) explore the response of chains of small paramagnetic beads that are elastically bonded together to form artificial cilia. The chain or fleximag is tethered to the surface and driven by external magnetic fields, responding also to both fluid and elastic forces. A key observation from their experiments and model is that for a simple planar-forcing strategy there is a hidden symmetry that limits the net transport of fluid.
Flexible superparamagnetic filaments (‘fleximags’) are very slender elastic filaments, which can be driven by distributed magnetic torques to mimic closely the behaviour of biological flagella. Previously, fleximags have been used as a basis for artificial micro-swimmers capable of transporting small cargos Dreyfus et al. (Nature, vol. 437, 2005, p. 862). Here, we demonstrate how these filaments can be anchored to a wall to make carpets of artificial micro-magnetic cilia with tunable densities. We analyse the dynamics of an artificial cilium under both planar and three-dimensional beating patterns. We show that the dynamics are controlled by a single characteristic length scale varying with the inverse square root of the driving frequency, providing a mechanism to break the fore and aft symmetry and to generate net fluxes and forces. However, we show that an effective geometrical reciprocity in the filament dynamics creates intrinsic limitations upon the ability of the artificial flagellum to pump fluid when driven in two dimensions.
The effect of the shear parameter on the small-scale velocity statistics in an homogeneous turbulent shear flow is investigated using direct numerical simulations (DNSs) of the incompressible Navier–Stokes equations on a 5123 grid. We use a novel pseudo-spectral algorithm that allows us to set the initial value of the shear parameter in the range 3–30 without the shortcomings of previous numerical approaches. We find that the tails of the probability distribution function of components of the vorticity vector and rate-of-strain tensor are progressively distorted with increasing shear parameter. Furthermore, we show that the shear parameter has a direct effect on the structure of the vorticity field, which manifests through changes in its alignment with the eigenvectors of the rate-of-strain tensor. We also find that increasing the shear parameter causes the main contribution to enstrophy production to shift from the nonlinear terms to the rapid terms (terms that are proportional to the mean shear) due to the aforementioned changes in the alignment. We attempt to explain these trends using viscous rapid distortion theory; however, while the theory does capture some effects of the shear parameter, it fails to predict the correct dependence on Reynolds number. Comparisons with recent experiments are also shown. The trends predicted by the DNS and the experiments are in good agreement. Moreover, the prefactors in the Reynolds number scaling laws for the skewness and flatness of the longitudinal velocity derivative are shown to have a statistically significant dependence on the shear parameter.
Many microorganisms exhibit taxes, biased swimming motion relative to a directional stimulus. Aggregations of cells with densities dissimilar to the medium in which they swim can induce hydrodynamic instabilities and bioconvection patterns. Here, three novel and mechanistically distinct models of the interaction of the two dominant taxes in suspensions of swimming phototrophic algae are presented: phototaxis, swimming towards or away from light, and gyrotaxis, a balance between viscous and gravitational torques. The descriptions are accordant with, and extend, recent rational models of bioconvection. In particular, the first model is for photokinesis–gyrotaxis, the second varies the cells' centre-of-mass offset, and the third introduces a reactive phototactic torque associated with the propulsive flagellar apparatus. Equilibria and linear-stability analysis in a layer of finite depth are analysed in detail using analytical and numerical methods. Results indicate that the first two models, despite their different roots, remarkably are in agreement. Penetrative and oscillatory modes are found and explained. Dramatically different behaviour is obtained for the model with phototactic torques: instabilities arise even in the absence of fluid motion due to induced gradients of light intensity. Typically, the response of microorganisms to light is multifaceted and thus some combination of the three models is appropriate. Encouragingly, qualitative agreement is found with recent experimental measurements on the effects of illumination on dominant pattern wavelength in bioconvection experiments. The theory may be of some interest in the emergent field of bioreactor design.
Vortical structures were identified and characterized using velocity fields of turbulent wall-bounded flows. Two direct numerical simulation data sets of fully developed channel flow at Reτ = 934 obtained by del Álamo et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 500, 2004, p. 135) and Reτ = 590 obtained by Moser, Kim & Mansour (Phys. Fluids, vol. 11, 1999, p. 943) as well as dual-plane particle image velocimetry data at z+ = 110 in a zero-pressure-gradient turbulent boundary layer at Reτ = 1160 obtained by Ganapathisubramani, Longmire & Marusic (Phys. Fluids, vol. 18, 2006, 055105) were employed. The three-dimensional swirling strength based on the local velocity gradient tensor was employed to identify vortex core locations. The real eigenvector of the tensor was used both to refine the identification algorithm and to determine the orientation of each vortex core. The identification method allowed cores of nearly all orientations to be analysed. Circulation of each vortical structure was calculated using the vorticity vector projected onto the real eigenvector direction. Various population distributions were then computed at different wall-normal locations including core size, orientation, circulation and propagation velocity. The mean radius of the cores identified was found to increase with increasing wall-normal distance, and the mean circulation increases approximately quadratically with eddy radius. Orientations of cores with stronger circulation were distributed over a much narrower range than those for vortices with weaker circulation and were consistent with legs, necks and heads of forward-leaning hairpin structures.
This study is concerned with the boundary-layer separation from a rigid body surface in unsteady two-dimensional laminar supersonic flow. The separation is assumed to be provoked by a shock wave impinging upon the boundary layer at a point that moves with speed Vsh along the body surface. The strength of the shock and its speed Vsh are allowed to vary with time t, but not too fast, namely, we assume that the characteristic time scale t ≪ Re−1/2/Vw2. Here Re denotes the Reynolds number, and Vw = −Vsh is wall velocity referred to the gas velocity V∞ in the free stream. We show that under this assumption the flow in the region of interaction between the shock and boundary layer may be treated as quasi-steady if it is considered in the coordinate frame moving with the shock. We start with the flow regime when Vw = O(Re−1/8). In this case, the interaction between the shock and boundary layer is described by classical triple-deck theory. The main modification to the usual triple-deck formulation is that in the moving frame the body surface is no longer stationary; it moves with the speed Vw = −Vsh. The corresponding solutions of the triple-deck equations have been constructed numerically. For this purpose, we use a numerical technique based on finite differencing along the streamwise direction and Chebyshev collocation in the direction normal to the body surface. In the second part of the paper, we assume that 1 ≫ Vw ≫ O(Re−1/8), and concentrate our attention on the self-induced separation of the boundary layer. Assuming, as before, that the Reynolds number, Re, is large, the method of matched asymptotic expansions is used to construct the corresponding solutions of the Navier–Stokes equations in a vicinity of the separation point.
We carry out linear and nonlinear analyses on a flow between two infinitely long concentric cylinders with the radii a and b subject to a sliding motion of the inner cylinder in the axial direction. We confirm the linear stability result of Gittler (Acta Mechanica, vol. 101, 1993, p. 1) for the axisymmetric case, namely the flow is linearly stable against axisymmetric perturbations when the radius ratio η = a/b is greater than 0.1415. We extend his analysis to the non-axisymmetric case and find that the stability of the flow is still determined by axisymmetric perturbations. Our nonlinear analysis exhibits that (i) finite-amplitude axisymmetric solutions exist far below the linear critical Reynolds number for η < 0.1415 and (ii) non-axisymmetric travelling wave solutions appear abruptly at a finite Reynolds number even for η > 0.1415 where the linear critical state is absent.
We derive boundary conditions at a rigid wall for a granular material comprising rough, inelastic particles. Our analysis is confined to the rapid flow, or granular gas, regime in which grains interact by impulsive collisions. We use the Chapman–Enskog expansion in the kinetic theory of dense gases, extended for inelastic and rough particles, to determine the relevant fluxes to the wall. As in previous studies, we assume that the particles are spheres, and that the wall is corrugated by hemispheres rigidly attached to it. Collisions between the particles and the wall hemispheres are characterized by coefficients of restitution and roughness. We derive boundary conditions for the two limiting cases of nearly smooth and nearly perfectly rough spheres, as a hydrodynamic description of granular gases comprising rough spheres is appropriate only in these limits. The results are illustrated by applying the equations of motion and boundary conditions to the problem of plane Couette flow.
We theoretically examine the propagation of sound in a waveguide bounded by a metamaterial formed by an array of small Helmholtz resonators. The field equation is shown to be similar to that governing sound in a bubbly liquid. The effects of dissipation on the wave dispersion are examined. In particular, it is shown that the energy in a monochromatic wave train is not transported by the real part of the complex group velocity unless dissipation is absent. We further derived the envelope equation and show that in a one-dimensional waveguide, energy is transported forward despite the backward motion of the envelope peak.
We study the motion and deformation of a liquid capsule enclosed by a surface-incompressible membrane as a model of red blood cell dynamics in shear flow. Considering a slightly ellipsoidal initial shape, an analytical solution to the creeping-flow equations is obtained as a regular perturbation expansion in the excess area. The analysis takes into account the membrane fluidity, area-incompressibility and resistance to bending. The theory captures the observed transition from tumbling to swinging as the shear rate increases and clarifies the effect of capsule deformability. Near the transition, intermittent behaviour (swinging periodically interrupted by a tumble) is found only if the capsule deforms in the shear plane and does not undergo stretching or compression along the vorticity direction; the intermittency disappears if deformation along the vorticity direction occurs, i.e. if the capsule ‘breathes’. We report the phase diagram of capsule motions as a function of viscosity ratio, non-sphericity and dimensionless shear rate.
We develop a model describing the buoyancy-driven propagation of two-phase gravity currents, motivated by problems in groundwater hydrology and geological storage of carbon dioxide (CO2). In these settings, fluid invades a porous medium saturated with an immiscible second fluid of different density and viscosity. The action of capillary forces in the porous medium results in spatial variations of the saturation of the two fluids. Here, we consider the propagation of fluid in a semi-infinite porous medium across a horizontal, impermeable boundary. In such systems, once the aspect ratio is large, fluid flow is mainly horizontal and the local saturation is determined by the vertical balance between capillary and gravitational forces. Gradients in the hydrostatic pressure along the current drive fluid flow in proportion to the saturation-dependent relative permeabilities, thus determining the shape and dynamics of two-phase currents. The resulting two-phase gravity current model is attractive because the formalism captures the essential macroscopic physics of multiphase flow in porous media. Residual trapping of CO2 by capillary forces is one of the key mechanisms that can permanently immobilize CO2 in the societally important example of geological CO2 sequestration. The magnitude of residual trapping is set by the areal extent and saturation distribution within the current, both of which are predicted by the two-phase gravity current model. Hence the magnitude of residual trapping during the post-injection buoyant rise of CO2 can be estimated quantitatively. We show that residual trapping increases in the presence of a capillary fringe, despite the decrease in average saturation.
We present a theoretical and numerical study of the decay of an internal wave caused by scattering at undulating sea-floor topography, with an eye towards building a simple model in which the decay of internal tides in the ocean can be estimated. As is well known, the interactions of internal waves with irregular boundary shapes lead to a mathematically ill-posed problem, so care needs to be taken to extract meaningful information from this problem. Here, we restrict the problem to two spatial dimensions and build a numerical tool that combines a real-space computation based on the characteristics of the underlying partial differential equation with a spectral computation that satisfies the relevant radiation conditions. Our tool works for finite-amplitude topography but is restricted to subcritical topography slopes. Detailed results are presented for the decay of the gravest vertical internal wave mode as it encounters finite stretches of either sinusoidal topography or random topography defined as a Gaussian random process with a simple power spectrum. A number of scaling laws are identified and a simple expression for the decay rate in terms of the power spectrum is given. Finally, the resulting formulae are applied to an idealized model of sea-floor topography in the ocean, which seems to indicate that this scattering process can provide a rapid decay mechanism for internal tides. However, the present results are restricted to linear fluid dynamics in two spatial dimensions and to uniform stratification, which restricts their direct application to the real ocean.
Using a combination of theoretical modelling and experiments, seiches in a reservoir are shown to become linearly unstable due to the coupling with flow under a dam that opens and closes in response to the upstream water pressure. The phenomenon is related to the mechanism commonly attributed to generate sound in musical instruments like the clarinet. Shallow water theory is used to model waves in the reservoir, and these are coupled, by an outflow condition, to a nonlinear oscillator equation for the dam opening. In general, several modes of oscillation are predicted to be unstable, and the frequency of the most unstable mode compares well with the dominant frequencies observed in the experiments. The experiments also show a systematic variation of the amplitude and spatial structure of the oscillations with the weight of the dam, reflecting the nonlinear coupling between the unstable modes of the system.
The interaction of the overlying turbulent flow with a riblet surface and its impact on drag reduction are analysed. The ‘viscous regime’ of vanishing riblet spacing, in which the drag reduction produced by the riblets is proportional to their size, is reasonably well understood, but this paper focuses on the behaviour for spacings s+ ≃ 10–20, expressed in wall units, where the viscous regime breaks down and the reduction eventually becomes an increase. Experimental evidence suggests that the two regimes are largely independent, and, based on a re-evaluation of existing data, it is shown that the optimal rib size is collapsed best by the square root of the groove cross-section, ℓg+=Ag+1/2. The mechanism of the breakdown is investigated by systematic DNSs with increasing riblet sizes. It is found that the breakdown is caused by the appearance of long spanwise rollers below y+ ≈ 20, with typical streamwise wavelengths λx+ ≈ 150, that develop from a two-dimensional Kelvin–Helmholtz-like instability of the mean streamwise flow, similar to those over plant canopies and porous surfaces. They account for the drag breakdown, both qualitatively and quantitatively. It is shown that a simplified linear instability model explains the scaling of the breakdown spacing with ℓg+.
This paper considers the implications of a high-Reynolds-number thin parallel boundary layer on fluid–solid interaction. Two types of boundaries are considered: a compliant boundary which is flexible but impermeable, such as an elastic sheet or elastic solid, and a permeable boundary which is rigidly fixed, such as a perforated rigid sheet. The fluid flow consists of a steady flow along the boundary and a small time-dependent perturbation, with the boundary reacting to the perturbation. The fluid displacement due to the perturbation is assumed to be much smaller than the boundary-layer thickness. The analysis is equally valid for compressible and incompressible fluids. Numerical examples are given for compressible flow along a cylindrical duct, for both permeable and compliant cylinder walls. The difference between compliant and permeable walls is shown to be dramatic in some cases. High- and low-frequency asymptotics are derived, and shown to compare well to the numerics. When used with a mass–spring–damper boundary, this model is shown to lead to similar, but not identical, temporal instability with unbounded growth rate to that seen for slipping flow using the Myers boundary condition. It is therefore suggested that a regularization of the Myers boundary condition removing the unbounded growth rate may lead to, or at least inform, a regularization of the model presented here.
We perform direct numerical simulation to study the transport of gas and heat as passive scalars in free-surface turbulence. Our analysis focuses on the surface age of surface fluid particles, i.e. the time elapsed since the last surface renewal they experienced. Using Lagrangian tracing of fluid particles combined with heat diffusion analysis, we are able to directly quantify surface age to illustrate scalar characteristics at different stages of interfacial transfer. Results show that at the early stage of surface renewal, vertical advection associated with upwellings greatly enhances surface gas flux; random surface renewal model does not apply at this stage when most of the interfacial gas transfer occurs. After a fluid particle leaves the upwelling region, it may enter a nearby downwelling region immediately, where the gas flux is sharply reduced but the variation in surface temperature is small; alternatively, the fluid particle may travel along the surface for some time before it is absorbed by a downwelling, where the surface temperature has changed significantly due to long duration of diffusion and the gas flux is also reduced. To gain further insight into the relationships between surface velocity and scalar quantities, we perform a statistical analysis of upwellings using clustering and nonlinear regression. With this analysis, we are able to provide qualitative and quantitative descriptions of the skewed probability density functions associated with the surface divergence, temperature and gas flux that support our physics-based investigation of surface renewal and surface age.
The dispersion of a passive scalar (temperature) from a concentrated line source in fully developed, high-aspect-ratio turbulent channel flow is studied herein. The line source is oriented in the direction of the inhomogeneity of the velocity field, resulting in a thermal plume that is statistically three-dimensional. This configuration is selected to investigate the lateral dispersion of a passive scalar in an inhomogeneous turbulent flow (i.e. dispersion in planes parallel to the channel walls). Measurements are recorded at six wall-normal distances (y/h = 0.10, 0.17, 0.33, 0.50, 0.67 and 1.0), six downstream positions (x/h = 4.0, 7.4, 10.8, 15.2, 18.6 and 22.0) and a Reynolds number of Re ≡ 〈U〉y = hh/v = 10200 (Reτ ≡ u∗h/v = 502). The lateral mean temperature excess profiles were found to be well represented by Gaussian distributions. The root-mean-square (r.m.s.) profiles, on the other hand, were symmetric, but non-Gaussian. Consistent with homogeneous flows (and in contrast to the work of Lavertu & Mydlarski (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 528, 2005, p. 135) studying transverse dispersion in the same flow), (i) the downstream growth rate of the centreline mean temperature excess, centreline r.m.s. temperature fluctuation and half-width of the mean and r.m.s. temperature profiles followed a power law evolution in the downstream direction, and (ii) the r.m.s. profiles evolved from single-peaked to double-peaked profiles far downstream. By comparing the measured ratios of the centreline r.m.s. temperature fluctuation to the mean temperature excess to the ratios measured in other flows, it was hypothesized that the mean-flow shear, as well as the turbulence intensity, played an important, cooperative role in increasing the mixedness of the flow. The probability density functions (PDFs) were quasi-Gaussian near the wall as well as for large-enough downstream distances. Closer to both the source and the channel centreline, the PDFs were better approximated by exponential distributions, with a sharp peak corresponding to the free-stream temperature. For intermediate downstream distances, the PDFs of the lateral dispersion were better mixed than analogous PDFs of the transverse dispersion, consistent with the mixedness measurements.
The redistribution of mean momentum and vorticity, along with the mechanisms underlying these redistribution processes, is explored for post-laminar flow in fully developed, pressure driven, channel flow. These flows, generically referred to as transitional, include an instability stage and a nonlinear development stage. The central focus is on the nonlinear development stage. The present analyses use existing direct numerical simulation data sets, as well as recently reported high-resolution molecular tagging velocimetry measurements. Primary considerations stem from the emergence of the effects of turbulent inertia as represented by the Reynolds stress gradient in the mean differential statement of dynamics. The results describe the flow evolution following the formation of a non-zero Reynolds stress peak that is known to first arise near the critical layer of the most unstable disturbance. The positive and negative peaks in the Reynolds stress gradient profile are observed to undergo a relative movement toward both the wall and centreline for subsequent increases in Reynolds number. The Reynolds stress profiles are shown to almost immediately exhibit the same sequence of curvatures that exists in the fully turbulent regime. In the transitional regime, the outer inflection point in this profile physically indicates a localized zone within which the mean dynamics are dominated by inertia. These observations connect to recent theoretical findings for the fully turbulent regime, e.g. as described by Fife, Klewicki & Wei (J. Discrete Continuous Dyn. Syst., vol. 24, 2009, p. 781) and Klewicki, Fife & Wei (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 638, 2009, p. 73). In accord with momentum equation analyses at higher Reynolds number, the present observations provide evidence that a logarithmic mean velocity profile is most rapidly approximated on a sub-domain located between the zero in the Reynolds stress gradient (maximum in the Reynolds stress) and the outer region location of the maximal Reynolds stress gradient (inflection point in the Reynolds stress profile). Overall, the present findings provide evidence that the dynamical processes during the post-laminar regime and those operative in the high Reynolds number regime are connected and describable within a single theoretical framework.
This paper investigates numerically and through an asymptotic approach the three-dimensional stability of steady vertical vortex arrays in a stratified and rotating fluid. Three classical vortex arrays are studied: the Kármán vortex street, the symmetric double row and the single row of co-rotating vortices. The asymptotic analysis assumes well-separated vortices and long-wavelength bending perturbations following Billant (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 660, 2010, p. 354) and Robinson & Saffman (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 125, 1982, p. 411). Very good agreement with the numerical stability analysis is found even for finite wavelength and relatively close vortices. For a horizontal Froude number Fh ≤ 1 and for a non-rotating fluid, it is found that the Kármán vortex street for a street spacing ratio (the distance h between the rows divided by the distance b between vortices in the same row) κ ≤ 0.41 and the symmetric double row for any spacing ratio are most unstable to a three-dimensional instability of zigzag type that vertically bends the vortices. The most amplified vertical wavenumber scales like 1/(bFh) and the growth rate scales with the strain Γ/(2πb2), where Γ is the vortex circulation. For the Kármán vortex street, the zigzag instability is symmetric with respect to the midplane between the two rows while it is antisymmetric for the symmetric double row. For the Kármán vortex street with well-separated vortex rows κ > 0.41 and the single row, the dominant instability is two-dimensional and corresponds to a pairing of adjacent vortices of the same row. The main differences between stratified and homogeneous fluids are the opposite symmetry of the dominant three-dimensional instabilities and the scaling of their most amplified wavenumber. When Fh > 1, three-dimensional instabilities are damped by a viscous critical layer. In the presence of background rotation in addition to the stratification, symmetric and antisymmetric modes no longer decouple and cyclonic vortices are less bent than anticyclonic vortices. However, the dominant instability remains qualitatively the same for the three vortex arrays, i.e. quasi-symmetric or quasi-antisymmetric and three-dimensional or two-dimensional. The growth rate continues to scale with the strain but the most unstable wavenumber of three-dimensional instabilities decreases with rotation and scales like Ro/(bFh) for small Rossby number Ro, in agreement with quasi-geostrophic scaling laws.
A steady sheet flow of an inviscid incompressible fluid along a curvilinear surface ending with a rounded trailing edge is considered in the presence of gravity. The effect of surface tension is ignored. The formulation of the problem is applicable to the study of free-surface flows over obstacles in channels, weirs and spillways, and pouring flows. An advanced hodograph method is employed for solving the problem, which is reduced to a system of two integro-differential equations in the velocity modulus on the free surface and in the slope of the bottom surface. These equations are derived from the dynamic and kinematic boundary conditions. The Brillouin–Villat criterion is applied to determine the location of the point of flow separation from the rounded trailing edge. Results showing the effect of gravity on the flow detachment and the geometry of the free boundaries are presented over a wide range of Froude numbers including both subcritical and supercritical flows. For supercritical flows two families of solutions for an arbitrary bottom shape are reproduced. It is shown that the additional condition requiring the free surface to be flat at a finite distance from the end of the channel selects a unique solution for a given bottom height and geometry for supercritical flows. This solution is continuous in going from the subcritical to the supercritical flow regime.