Direct numerical simulation studies of Lagrangian intermittency in turbulence

Brian Lewis Sawford, Pui-Kuen Kuen Yeung

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Lag-averaged Lagrangian statistics from direct numerical simulations over a range of Reynolds numbers are analyzed to test the predictions of the Lagrangian Refined Similarity Hypothesis (LRSH). The analysis uses the Lagrangian integral time scale to scale the lag since it is the natural time scale to reveal trends and scaling with Reynolds number. Both the velocity difference and the dissipation rate probability density functions (PDFs) collapse across inertial sub-range and diffusive scales for approximately the same values of the scaled lag, and in the zero lag limit are independent of the lag and depend only on the Reynolds number. These findings are consistent with the LRSH. The velocity difference PDFs are characterized by stretched exponential tails, while the dissipation rate PDFs for small lags have a log normal core with power lawtails at both large and small values of the dissipation rate. The velocity structure functions show inertial sub-range similarity scaling with Reynolds number which extends to smaller scales with increasing Reynolds number. Estimates of the scaling exponents obtained are consistent with those from previous studies. They tend to saturate at a value of about two for high order moments. Non-dimensional acceleration moments show a striking power law dependence on Reynolds number from which novel estimates of the scaling exponents have been determined. Similarity scaling is much more elusive to demonstrate in the dissipation rate moments. The data are consistent with, but do not confirm, the Oboukhov relationship connecting velocity structure functions and dissipation rate moments on inertial sub-range scales.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1 - 21
Number of pages21
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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