Turbulence generation through intense kinetic energy sources Academic Article uri icon


  • 2016 Author(s). Direct numerical simulations (DNS) are used to systematically study the development and establishment of turbulence when the flow is initialized with concentrated regions of intense kinetic energy. This resembles both active and passive grids which have been extensively used to generate and study turbulence in laboratories at different Reynolds numbers and with different characteristics, such as the degree of isotropy and homogeneity. A large DNS database was generated covering a wide range of initial conditions with a focus on perturbations with some directional preference, a condition found in active jet grids and passive grids passed through a contraction as well as a new type of active grid inspired by the experimental use of lasers to photo-excite the molecules that comprise the fluid. The DNS database is used to assert under what conditions the flow becomes turbulent and if so, the time required for this to occur. We identify a natural time scale of the problem which indicates the onset of turbulence and a single Reynolds number based exclusively on initial conditions which controls the evolution of the flow. It is found that a minimum Reynolds number is needed for the flow to evolve towards fully developed turbulence. An extensive analysis of single and two point statistics, velocity as well as spectral dynamics and anisotropy measures is presented to characterize the evolution of the flow towards realistic turbulence.

published proceedings

  • Physics of Fluids

altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Maqui, A. F., & Donzis, D. A.

citation count

  • 2

complete list of authors

  • Maqui, Agustin F||Donzis, Diego A

publication date

  • June 2016