Turbulent transition in a truncated one-dimensional model for shear flow

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Abstract

We present a reduced model for the transition to turbulence in shear flow that is simple enough to admit a thorough numerical investigation, while allowing spatio-temporal dynamics that are substantially more complex than those allowed in previous modal truncations. Our model allows a comparison of the dynamics resulting from initial perturbations that are localized in the spanwise direction with those resulting from sinusoidal perturbations. For spanwise-localized initial conditions, the subcritical transition to a 'turbulent' state (i) takes place more abruptly, with a boundary between laminar and turbulent flows that appears to be much less 'structured' and (ii) results in a spatio-temporally chaotic regime within which the lifetimes of spatio-temporally complicated transients are longer, and are even more sensitive to initial conditions. The minimum initial energy E(0) required for a spanwise-localized initial perturbation to excite a chaotic transient has a power-law scaling with the Reynolds number E(0) similar to Re(p) with p approximate to -4.3. The exponent p depends only weakly on the width of the localized perturbation and is lower than that commonly observed in previous low-dimensional models where typically p approximate to -2. The distributions of lifetimes of chaotic transients at the fixed Reynolds number are found to be consistent with exponential distributions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3066-3087
Number of pages22
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society of London Series A - Mathematical Physical and Engineering Sciences
Volume467
Issue number2135
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 8 Nov 2011

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Shear flow
Shear Flow
One-dimensional Model
shear flow
Perturbation
perturbation
Reynolds number
Lifetime
Initial conditions
Scaling laws
Transition to Turbulence
Laminar flow
life (durability)
Turbulent flow
Reduced Model
Turbulence
Laminar Flow
Exponential distribution
Numerical Investigation
laminar flow

Keywords

  • dynamical systems
  • fluid flow
  • turbulence

Cite this

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title = "Turbulent transition in a truncated one-dimensional model for shear flow",
abstract = "We present a reduced model for the transition to turbulence in shear flow that is simple enough to admit a thorough numerical investigation, while allowing spatio-temporal dynamics that are substantially more complex than those allowed in previous modal truncations. Our model allows a comparison of the dynamics resulting from initial perturbations that are localized in the spanwise direction with those resulting from sinusoidal perturbations. For spanwise-localized initial conditions, the subcritical transition to a 'turbulent' state (i) takes place more abruptly, with a boundary between laminar and turbulent flows that appears to be much less 'structured' and (ii) results in a spatio-temporally chaotic regime within which the lifetimes of spatio-temporally complicated transients are longer, and are even more sensitive to initial conditions. The minimum initial energy E(0) required for a spanwise-localized initial perturbation to excite a chaotic transient has a power-law scaling with the Reynolds number E(0) similar to Re(p) with p approximate to -4.3. The exponent p depends only weakly on the width of the localized perturbation and is lower than that commonly observed in previous low-dimensional models where typically p approximate to -2. The distributions of lifetimes of chaotic transients at the fixed Reynolds number are found to be consistent with exponential distributions.",
keywords = "dynamical systems, fluid flow, turbulence",
author = "Dawes, {Jonathan H P} and Giles, {W J}",
year = "2011",
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T1 - Turbulent transition in a truncated one-dimensional model for shear flow

AU - Dawes, Jonathan H P

AU - Giles, W J

PY - 2011/11/8

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N2 - We present a reduced model for the transition to turbulence in shear flow that is simple enough to admit a thorough numerical investigation, while allowing spatio-temporal dynamics that are substantially more complex than those allowed in previous modal truncations. Our model allows a comparison of the dynamics resulting from initial perturbations that are localized in the spanwise direction with those resulting from sinusoidal perturbations. For spanwise-localized initial conditions, the subcritical transition to a 'turbulent' state (i) takes place more abruptly, with a boundary between laminar and turbulent flows that appears to be much less 'structured' and (ii) results in a spatio-temporally chaotic regime within which the lifetimes of spatio-temporally complicated transients are longer, and are even more sensitive to initial conditions. The minimum initial energy E(0) required for a spanwise-localized initial perturbation to excite a chaotic transient has a power-law scaling with the Reynolds number E(0) similar to Re(p) with p approximate to -4.3. The exponent p depends only weakly on the width of the localized perturbation and is lower than that commonly observed in previous low-dimensional models where typically p approximate to -2. The distributions of lifetimes of chaotic transients at the fixed Reynolds number are found to be consistent with exponential distributions.

AB - We present a reduced model for the transition to turbulence in shear flow that is simple enough to admit a thorough numerical investigation, while allowing spatio-temporal dynamics that are substantially more complex than those allowed in previous modal truncations. Our model allows a comparison of the dynamics resulting from initial perturbations that are localized in the spanwise direction with those resulting from sinusoidal perturbations. For spanwise-localized initial conditions, the subcritical transition to a 'turbulent' state (i) takes place more abruptly, with a boundary between laminar and turbulent flows that appears to be much less 'structured' and (ii) results in a spatio-temporally chaotic regime within which the lifetimes of spatio-temporally complicated transients are longer, and are even more sensitive to initial conditions. The minimum initial energy E(0) required for a spanwise-localized initial perturbation to excite a chaotic transient has a power-law scaling with the Reynolds number E(0) similar to Re(p) with p approximate to -4.3. The exponent p depends only weakly on the width of the localized perturbation and is lower than that commonly observed in previous low-dimensional models where typically p approximate to -2. The distributions of lifetimes of chaotic transients at the fixed Reynolds number are found to be consistent with exponential distributions.

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