1992-10-01

Three-Dimensional Boundary Layer Stability and Transition 921991

Nonparallel and nonlinear stability of a three-dimensional boundary layer, subject to crossflow instability, is investigated using parabolized stability equations (PSE). Both traveling and stationary disturbances are considered and nonparallel effect on crossflow instability is found to be destabilizing. Our linear PSE results for stationary disturbances agree well with the results from direct solution of Navier-Stokes equations obtained by Spalart (1989). Nonlinear calculations have been carried out for stationary vortices and the computed wall vorticity pattern results in streamwise streaks which resemble remarkably well with the surface oil-flow visualizations in swept-wing experiments. Other features of the stationary vortex development (half-mushroom structure, inflected velocity profiles, vortex doubling, etc.) are also captured in our nonlinear calculations. Nonlinear interaction of the stationary and traveling waves is also studied. When initial amplitude of the stationary vortex is large as compared to the traveling mode, the stationary vortex dominates most of the downstream development. When the two modes have the same initial amplitude, the traveling mode dominates the downstream development owing to its higher growth rate, and there is a tendency for the stationary mode to be suppressed. The effect of nonlinear wave development on the skin-friction coefficient is also computed.

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