Comparison of direct numerical simulation databases of turbulent channel flow at reτ = 180

A.W. Vreman*, J.G.M. Kuerten

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    143 Citations (Scopus)
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    Direct numerical simulation (DNS) databases are compared to assess the accuracy and reproducibility of standard and non-standard turbulence statistics of incompressible plane channel flow at Reτ = 180. Two fundamentally different DNS codes are shown to produce maximum relative deviations below 0.2% for the mean flow, below 1% for the root-mean-square velocity and pressure fluctuations, and below 2% for the three components of the turbulent dissipation. Relatively fine grids and long statistical averaging times are required. An analysis of dissipation spectra demonstrates that the enhanced resolution is necessary for an accurate representation of the smallest physical scales in the turbulent dissipation. The results are related to the physics of turbulent channel flow in several ways. First, the reproducibility supports the hitherto unproven theoretical hypothesis that the statistically stationary state of turbulent channel flow is unique. Second, the peaks of dissipation spectra provide information on length scales of the small-scale turbulence. Third, the computed means and fluctuations of the convective, pressure, and viscous terms in the momentum equation show the importance of the different forces in the momentum equation relative to each other. The Galilean transformation that leads to minimum peak fluctuation of the convective term is determined. Fourth, an analysis of higher-order statistics is performed. The skewness of the longitudinal derivative of the streamwise velocity is stronger than expected (-1.5 at y+ =30). This skewness and also the strong near-wall intermittency of the normal velocity are related to coherent structures.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number015102
    JournalPhysics of fluids
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 8 Jan 2014


    • Reynolds stress modeling
    • Turbulent channel flow
    • Viscosity
    • Lagrangian mechanics
    • Turbulent flows
    • 2023 OA procedure


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