Journal of Fluid Mechanics

An example of steady laminar flow at large Reynolds number

Iam  Proudman a1
a1 Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge

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The purpose of this note is to describe a particular class of steady fluid flows, for which the techniques of classical hydrodynamics and boundary-layer theory determine uniquely the asymptotic flow for large Reynolds number for each of a continuously varied set of boundary conditions. The flows involve viscous layers in the interior of the flow domain, as well as boundary layers, and the investigation is unusual in that the position and structure of all the viscous layers are determined uniquely. The note is intended to be an illustration of the principles that lead to this determination, not a source of information of practical value.

The flows take place in a two-dimensional channel with porous walls through which fluid is uniformly injected or extracted. When fluid is extracted through both walls there are boundary layers on both walls and the flow outside these layers is irrotational. When fluid is extracted through one wall and injected through the other, there is a boundary layer only on the former wall and the inviscid rotational flow outside this layer satisfies the no-slip condition on the other wall. When fluid is injected through both walls there are no boundary layers, but there is a viscous layer in the interior of the channel, across which the second derivative of the tangential velocity is discontinous, and the position of this layer is determined by the requirement that the inviscid rotational flows on either side of it must satisfy the no-slip conditions on the walls.

(Published Online March 28 2006)
(Received July 22 1960)