A computational study of coherent structures in the wakes of two-dimensional bluff bodies
AuthorPearce, Jeffrey Alan
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The periodic shedding of vortices from bluff bodies was first recognized in the late 1800's. Currently, there is great interest concerning the effect of vortex shedding on structures and on vehicle stability. In the design of bluff structures which will be exposed to a flow, knowledge of the shedding frequency and the amplitude of the aerodynamic forces is critical. The ability to computationally predict parameters associated with periodic vortex shedding is thus a valuable tool. In this study, the periodic shedding of vortices from several bluff body geometries is predicted. The study is conducted with a two-dimensional finite-difference code employed on various grid sizes. The effects of the grid size and time step on the accuracy of the solution are addressed. Strouhal numbers and aerodynamic force coefficients are computed for all of the bodies considered and compared with previous experimental results. Results indicate that the finite-difference code is capable of predicting periodic vortex shedding for all of the geometries tested. Refinement of the finite-difference grid was found to give little improvement in the prediction; however, the choice of time step size was shown to be critical. Predictions of Strouhal numbers were generally accurate, and the calculated aerodynamic forces generally exhibited behavior consistent with previous studies.