Breakdown of laminar pipe flow into transitional intermittency and subsequent attainment of fully developed intermittent or turbulent flow

J. P. Abraham, E. M. Sparrow, J. C.K. Tong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations

Abstract

The breakdown of laminar pipe flow into transitional intermittency is predicted numerically here for the first time. Subsequent to transitional intermittency, a fully developed regime is achieved wherein the flow may be either intermittent or fully turbulent. Fully developed friction factors are predicted as a function of the Reynolds number throughout the intermittent regime. These predictions successfully bridge the gap between well-established laminar friction factors and turbulent friction factors. Definitive numerical information is provided about the locations in the pipe at which both laminar breakdown and fully developed attainment occur. These locations are a function of the Reynolds number. The streamwise changes in the velocity profiles reflect the complex evolution of the flow as it passes through the successive regimes. For design purposes, information is provided for the pressure drop that characterizes the evolving flow. The numerical results correspond to an inlet turbulence intensity level of 5%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)103-115
Number of pages13
JournalNumerical Heat Transfer, Part B: Fundamentals
Volume54
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2008

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