Research Papers

Detached Eddy Simulation of Atmospheric Flow About a Surface Mounted Cube at High Reynolds Number

[+] Author and Article Information
Sue Ellen Haupt1

Applied Research Laboratory, The Pennsylvania State University, P.O. Box 30, State College, PA 16804-0030haupts2@asme.org

Frank J. Zajaczkowski

Applied Research Laboratory, The Pennsylvania State University, P.O. Box 30, State College, PA 16804-0030fxz101@psu.edu

L. Joel Peltier2

Applied Research Laboratory, The Pennsylvania State University, P.O. Box 30, State College, PA 16804-0030ljpeltie@bechtel.com


Present address: National Center for Atmospheric Research/Research Applications Laboratory, Boulder, CO.


Present address: Bechtel Corporation, Frederick, MD.

J. Fluids Eng 133(3), 031002 (Mar 15, 2011) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4003649 History: Received December 22, 2006; Revised July 10, 2010; Published March 15, 2011; Online March 15, 2011

Modeling high Reynolds number (Re) flow is important for understanding wind loading on structures, transport and dispersion of airborne contaminants, and turbulence patterns in urban areas. This study reports a high fidelity computational fluid dynamics simulation of flow about a surface mounted cube for a Reynolds number sufficiently high to represent atmospheric flow conditions. Results from detached eddy simulations (DES) and zonal DES that compare well with field experiment data are presented. A study of reducing grid resolution indicates that further grid refinement would not make a significant difference in the flow field, adding confidence in the accuracy of the results. We additionally consider what features are captured by coarser grids. The conclusion is that these methods can produce high fidelity simulations of high Reynolds number atmospheric flow conditions with a modest grid resolution.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Computational domain

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Figure 2

Computational mesh for the BASE case runs. (a) Top view showing the refinement region, (b) side view through the cube, and (c) close-up of the side view indicating the prism layers near the wall.

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Figure 3

Inflow conditions from experiment

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Figure 4

Time averaged horizontal streamlines near bottom wall for BASE DES case as viewed from above

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Figure 5

Time averaged streamlines along a vertical slice through the centerline for BASE DES case

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Figure 6

Q-criteria isosurface colored by helicity

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Figure 7

Coefficient of pressure profiles at different grid resolutions

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Figure 8

Coefficient of pressure profiles comparing DES and ZDES to full scale and RANS. (a) Along the centerline of the cube, (b) along the transverse line of the cube, and (c) along the horizontal mid-height line of the cube.

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Figure 9

Velocities at selected positions/heights comparing DES to full scale and RANS. Locations 1, 2, and 3 are 600 mm away from the centers of the windward, side, and leeward faces, respectively, and include measurements at heights of 1 m, 3 m, and 6 m. Locations 5, 6, and 7 are positioned 9 m away from the same faces and include measurements at the same heights. Location 4 is 600 mm above the top face of the cube with measurements at the center of the face, 2 m upstream, and 2 m downstream of the center. (a), (b), and (c) indicate u/Uref, v/Uref, and w/Uref, respectively.



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