Journal of Fluid Mechanics


On the orientation of stiff fibres suspended in turbulent flow in a planar contraction

a1 Institute of Paper Science and Technology, Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 30332, USA
a2 School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 30332, USA
a3 G.W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 30332, USA

Article author query
parsheh m   [Google Scholar] 
brown ml   [Google Scholar] 
aidun ck   [Google Scholar] 


The influence of turbulence on the orientation state of a dilute density matched suspension of stiff fibres at high Reynolds number in a planar contraction is investigated. High-speed imaging and laser-Doppler velocimetry techniques are used to quantify fibre orientation distribution and turbulent characteristics. A nearly homogeneous isotropic grid-generated turbulent flow is introduced at the contraction inlet. Flow Reynolds number and inlet turbulent characteristics are varied in order to determine their effects on orientation distribution. The orientation anisotropy is shown to be accurately modelled by a Fokker-Planck type equation. Results show that rotational diffusion is highly influenced by inlet turbulent characteristics and decays exponentially with convergence ratio. Furthermore, the effect of turbulent energy production in the contraction is shown to be negligible. Also, the results show that the flow Reynolds number has negligible effect on the development of orientation anisotropy, and the influence of turbulence on fibre rotation is negligible for rotational Péclet number $\gt$10.

(Published Online December 2 2005)
(Received June 28 2004)
(Revised June 17 2005)