Flow organization in the wake of a rib in a turbulent boundary layer with pressure gradient Articles uri icon

publication date

  • November 2019

start page

  • 115

end page

  • 124


  • 108

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0894-1777

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-2286


  • The effect of a streamwise pressure gradient on the wake developed by wall-attached square ribs in a turbulent boundary layer is investigated experimentally. Favourable-, adverse- and zero-pressure-gradient conditions (FPG, APG and ZPG, respectively) are reproduced at matched friction Reynolds number and non-dimensional rib height. Flow-field measurements are carried out by means of Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV). Turbulence statistics are extracted at high resolution using an Ensemble Particle Tracking Velocimetry approach. Modal analysis is performed with Proper Orthogonal Decomposition (POD). We demonstrate that a non-dimensional expression of the pressure gradient and shear stress is needed to quantify the pressure-gradient effects in the wake developing past wall-attached ribs. We suggest the Clauser pressure-gradient parameter , commonly used in the literature for the characterization of turbulent boundary layers under the effect of a pressure gradient, as a suitable parameter. The results show that, in presence of an adverse pressure gradient, the recirculation region downstream of the rib is increased in size, thus delaying the reattachment, and that the peak of turbulence intensity and the shed eddies are shifted towards larger wall-normal distances than in the ZPG case. The observed changes with respect to the ZPG configuration appear more intense for larger magnitude of , which are more likely to be obtained in APG than in FPG due to the reduced skin friction and increased displacement thickness.


  • Mechanical Engineering


  • pressure gradient flows; ribs; turbulent boundary layer