Mathematical Proceedings of the Cambridge Philosophical Society

Research Article

Concerning some Solutions of the Boundary Layer Equations in Hydrodynamics

S. Goldsteina1

a1 St John's College

The boundary layer equations for a steady two-dimensional motion are solved for any given initial velocity distribution (distribution along a normal to the boundary wall, downstream of which the motion is to be calculated). This initial velocity distribution is assumed expressible as a polynomial in the distance from the wall. Three cases are considered: first, when in the initial distribution the velocity vanishes at the wall but its gradient along the normal does not; second, when the velocity in the initial distribution does not vanish at the wall; and third, when both the velocity and its normal gradient vanish at the wall (as at a point where the forward flow separates from the boundary). The solution is found as a power series in some fractional power of the distance along the wall, whose coefficients are functions of the distance from the wall to be found from ordinary differential equations. Some progress is made in the numerical calculation of these coefficients, especially in the first case. The main object was to find means for a step-by-step calculation of the velocity field in a boundary layer, and it is thought that such a procedure may possibly be successful even if laborious.

The same mathematical method is used to calculate the flow behind a flat plate along a stream. The results are shown in Figures 1 and 2, drawn from Tables III and IV.

(Received August 09 1929)

(Accepted October 28 1929)