A Hamilton-Jacobi differential equation is used to naturally and smoothly (via Dirichlet boundary conditions) set turbulence length scales in separated flow regions based on traditional expected length scales. Such zones occur for example in rim-seals. The approach is investigated using two test cases, flow over a cylinder at a Reynolds number of 140,000 and flow over a rectangular cavity at a Reynolds number of 50,000. The Nee-Kovasznay turbulence model is investigated using this approach.

Predicted drag coefficients for the cylinder test-case show significant (15%) improvement over standard steady RANS and are comparable with URANS results. The mean flow-field also shows a significant improvement over URANS. The error in reattachment length is improved by 180% compared with the steady RANS k–ω model. The wake velocity profile at a location downstream shows improvement and the URANS profile is inaccurate in comparison.

For the cavity case the HJ-NK approach is generally comparable with the other RANS models for measured velocity profiles. Predicted drag coefficients are compared with large eddy simulation. The new approach shows a 20–30% improvement in predicted drag coefficients compared with standard one and two equation RANS models. The shape of the recirculation region within the cavity is also much improved.

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