Computational studies of passive vortex generators for flow control

University dissertation from Stockholm : KTH

Abstract: Many flow cases in fluid dynamics face undesirable flow separation due torising static pressure on wall boundaries. This occurs e.g. due to geometry as ina highly curved turbine inlet duct or e.g. on flow control surfaces such as wingtrailing edge flaps within a certain angle of attack range. Here, flow controldevices are often used in order to enhance the flow and delay or even totallyeliminate flow separation. Flow control can e.g. be achieved by using passiveor active vortex generators (VG) that enable momentum mixing in such flows.This thesis focusses on passive VGs, represented by VG vanes that are mountedupright on the surface in wall-bounded flows. They typically have an angle ofincidence to the mean flow and, by that, generate vortex structures that in turnallow for the desired momentum mixing in order to prevent flow separation.A statistical VG model approach, developed by KTH Stockholm and FOI,the Swedish Defence Research Agency, has been evaluated computationally.Such a statistical VG model approach removes the need to build fully resolvedthree-dimensional geometries of VGs in a computational fluid dynamics mesh.Usually, the generation of these fully resolved geometries is rather costly interms of preprocessing and computations. By applying this VG model, thecosts reduce to computations without VG effects included. Nevertheless, theVG model needs to be set up in order to define the modelled VG geometry inan easy and fast preprocessing step. The presented model has shown sensitivityfor parameter variations such as the modelled VG geometry and the VG modellocation in wall-bounded zero pressure gradient and adverse pressure gradientflows on a flat plate, in a diffuser, and on an airfoil with its high-lift systemextracted. It could be proven that the VG model qualitatively describes correcttrends and tendencies for these different applications.