Flow Around an Elliptic Cylinder in the Critical Reynolds Number Regime

[+] Author and Article Information
T. Ota

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Tohoku University, Sendai 980, Japan

H. Nishiyama

Department of Mechanical and Production Engineering, Akita University, Akita 010, Japan

Y. Taoka

Nippon Kokan KK, Yokohama 230, Japan

J. Fluids Eng 109(2), 149-155 (Jun 01, 1987) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3242635 History: Received December 17, 1985; Online October 26, 2009


Flow around an elliptic cylinder of axis ratio 1:3 has been investigated experimentally in the critical Reynolds number regime on the basis of mean static pressure measurements along the cylinder surface and of hot-wire velocity measurements in the near wake. The critical Reynold number has been found to vary with the angle of attack α and attains a minimum around α = 5 to 10 deg. At the critical Reynolds number, the drag, lift, and moment coefficients change discontinuously, and the Strouhal number based on the upstream uniform flow velocity and the major axis length of the cylinder reaches a maximum of about 1.0 to 1.5 depending on α. It is found, however, that the universal Strouhal number based on the velocity along the separated shear layer and the wake width is nearly equal to 0.19, on average, even in the critical Reynolds number regime. The pressure distribution along with the surface oil flow pattern revealed the existence of a small separation bubble near the leading edge accompanying a turbulent boundary layer.

Copyright © 1987 by ASME
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