Flow and heat transfer in the wake of a triangular arrangement of spheres Academic Article uri icon


  • This research work seeks to investigate the influence of spacing and heat transfer on the wake behavior of a triangular arrangement of spheres. Four experimental configurations have been investigated at three Reynolds numbers, Re1=350, Re2=700, and Re3=1050. Two isothermal cases were investigated with spacing between the spheres of zero and one sphere diameter, and two cases were investigated with an applied heat flux at the same spacing conditions. The time resolved particle image velocimetry results revealed various flow phenomena including flow separations, von Karman vortex shedding, and KelvinHelmholtz instabilities. The turbulent statistics reveal the effect of proximity and heat transfer on the time averaged values of the wake size, turbulent strengths, and Reynolds shear stress in the wake of each sphere, namely, the laminarization effects from the addition of heat and the suppression of the lead sphere wake from the proximity of the trailing spheres. These results are complemented by the application of proper orthogonal decomposition (POD) to the flow fields, which extracts the coherent structures from the flow. The modes that describe the coherent structures are extracted and described in detail, which provide further insight into effects of the experimental conditions on the temporal behavior of the flow. Many of the low order modes are found to be associated in pairs, corresponding to asymmetric structures or advection of a given structure downstream. The capability of POD to produce reduced order models of the flow is then utilized to facilitate vortex identification analysis. A turbulent kinetic energy based mode truncation criteria, which has been found to enhance vortex identification capability, is applied to select the POD modes and temporal coefficients to be used in the reduced order modeling. The reconstructed velocity fields are then analyzed with vortex identification algorithms to extract the vortex cores and boundaries. The combination of these approaches allows the study of the effect of proximity and heat transfer on the vortex characteristics, such as size, strength, and distribution.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Muyshondt, R., Anand, N. K., Hassan, Y. A., & Nguyen, T.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Muyshondt, R||Anand, NK||Hassan, YA||Nguyen, T

publication date

  • November 2021