Quantitative numerical analysis of flow past a circular cylinder at Reynolds number between 50 and 200
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2013

Results of numerical simulations are presented for flow past a stationary circular cylinder at low Reynolds numbers (Re=50-200). The simulations were carried out using a finite-volume code employing a fractional step method with second-order accuracy in both space and time. A sensitivity study on numerical parameters concerning the domain size, grid independence and time step resolution was carried out in detail for Re=100. Global time-averaged results on force coefficients, non-dimensional velocities and pressures, including their corresponding r.m.s. values, as well as various quantities related to the separation and vortex shedding characteristics are presented. A non-monotonous streamwise velocity recovery in the intermediate wake is observed for Re > 50, a phenomenon that has been grossly overlooked in the past. There are two plateaus along the wake centerline, in particular for Re=200. The first, which is the most distinct, ranges from about x=9 to x=16 at a wake deficit velocity of 0.38, x being counted in diameters behind the cylinder axis; the second one appears from x=25 to x=28 at a wake deficit velocity of 0.54. This phenomenon seems to be related to an associated change-over in the orientation of the von Karman vortices and the merging trends, especially for Re=200 beyond x=25, as observed from instantaneous vorticity fields. Three-dimensional simulations using spanwise lengths of 10 and 12 (diameters) were carried out at Re=200. After a long initial phase with regular three-dimensional mode A flow features increasing very slowly in amplitude, the flow went into a state with distinct pulsating forces acting on the cylinder, the pulsations being seemingly randomly localized across the cylinder span. In this second, much more chaotic, flow state, the time-averaged results were in agreement with previous experiments and with parts of previous numerical studies.

Circular cylinder

vortex dislocations

Numerical simulation


wake transition





Incompressible flow

physical analysis

square cylinder

Vortex shedding

Low Reynolds number


far wake


L. X. Qu

China Agricultural University

C. Norberg

Lunds universitet

Lars Davidson

Chalmers, Tillämpad mekanik, Strömningslära

Peng Shia-Hui

Chalmers, Tillämpad mekanik, Strömningslära

F. J. Wang

China Agricultural University

Journal of Fluids and Structures

0889-9746 (ISSN) 1095-8622 (eISSN)

Vol. 39 347-370


Strömningsmekanik och akustik



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