Journal of Fluid Mechanics

Turbulent velocity fluctuations need not be Gaussian

a1 School of Aeronautics, U. Politécnica, 28040 Madrid, Spain


It is noted that the central limit theorem does not constrain the probability distribution of the components of the turbulent velocity fluctuations to be Gaussian, if their spectral slope is steeper than k−1. It is shown that, in a model of homogeneous turbulence in which each wavenumber of the energy spectrum predominantly receives contributions from eddies with roughly homogeneous amplitudes and coherence lengths, the p.d.f. would be slightly sub-Gaussian. This agrees with the available experimental evidence.

(Received August 20 1997)
(Revised March 23 1998)

Related Content