Flow Control using Convergent-Divergent Riblets, a Type of Bio-Inspired Micro-Scale Surface Patterns

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Micro-scale directional grooves with spanwise heterogeneity can induce large-scale vortices across the boundary layer, which is of great importance to both theoretical research and industrial applications. The direct numerical simulation approach was adopted in this project to explore flow structure and control mechanism of convergent-divergent (C-D) riblets, as well as the impact of their spacing, wavelength and height. The results show that the C-D riblets produce a well-defined secondary flow motion characterised by a pair of weak large-scale counter-rotating vortices. This roll mode can play a key role in supressing separation when the flow undergoes adverse pressure gradients, but it may also lead to the increase of friction drag.

Read the complete user research report at the Gauss Centre for Supercomputing.

Principal investigator

Jian Fang

Scientific Computing Department, STFC Daresbury Laboratory, UK