Experimental study of heat and momentum transfer in rotating channel flow

Authors: Matsubara, M., Alfredsson, P.H.
Document Type: Article
Pubstate: Published
Journal: Phys. Fluids
Volume: 8   2964-2973
Year: 1996


The enhancement of momentum and heat transfer caused by stationary streamwise vortices due to a Coriolis instability in a rotating straight channel is examined. It is shown that the changes in skin friction and Nusselt number depend on changes in the spanwise averaged mean flow and temperature distributions. Hot wire anemometry was used to experimentally determine the streamwise velocity and temperature distributions in a cross stream plane 68 channel widths downstream of the inlet. A technique to accurately compensate the velocity readings for the varying temperature in the channel was developed. It is shown that the streamwise vortices give rise to disturbance profiles which are close to those obtained from linear theory for small rotation numbers and that in this region there is no enhancement of either the averaged momentum or heat transfer. However, even for a disturbance amplitude in the streamwise velocity of the order of 20%, the disturbances are close to linear (both the disturbance distribution and growth rate). In this weakly non-linear region the changes in the mean flow and temperature distributions could be estimated by using the linear eigenfunctions of the disturbances where the amplitude was taken from the measurements. In the fully non-linear (saturated) region the Nusselt number on both the stable and unstable side of the channel was almost twice that at no rotation, however, the skin friction was almost unaffected on the stable side. This shows that the Reynolds analogy between momentum and heat transfer is not valid in this flow situation.