The influence of migrating bed forms on the velocity-intermittency structure of turbulent flow over a gravel bed

Christopher J. Keylock, Arvind Singh, Efi Foufoula-Georgiou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Modeling turbulent flows at high Reynolds number requires solving simplified variants of the Navier-Stokes equations. The methods used to close the resulting Reynolds-averaged, or eddy simulation equations usually follow classical theory and, at small enough scales, postulate universal scaling for turbulence that is independent of the velocity itself. This may not be the best way to conceptualize geophysical turbulence. Turbulent intermittency may be defined in terms of the local "roughness" of the velocity signal as measured by pointwise Hölder exponents. This study investigates the joint velocity-intermittency structure of flow over a gravel-bed surface with migrating bed forms. We report clear velocity-intermittency dependence and quantify its nature above the moving bed form profile. Our results imply differences in energy transfer close to bed forms at shorter wavelengths than those forced directly. Hence, progress in modeling flows of geophysical relevance may require a reconsideration of the principles on which turbulence closures are based. Key Points Bedforms fundamentally alter turbulence scaling The velocity-intermittency structure is also complex Improved turbulence closures will result from consideration of these principles

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1351-1355
Number of pages5
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume40
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 16 2013

Keywords

  • Bedforms
  • Closure schemes
  • Intermittency
  • Turbulence

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