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Overview of Turbulent Drag Reduction Research



Staff, Students, Academics

Speaker: Prof Maurizio Quadrio

Research Centre: Turbulence and Flow Control Research Group

Title: Overview of Turbulent Drag Reduction Reseach


The talk will provide an overview of the research carried out in the last 10 years or so at Politecnico di Milano on the subject of turbulence control in general and skin-friction drag reduction in particular, with the combined use of numerical and experimental techniques.

Techniques for reducing friction drag aim at modifying an essential aspect of turbulence, i.e. its interaction with a solid wall, resulting in a self-sustained regeneration cycle localized in the near-wall region. The nature of this cycle has become relatively understood in the last few years, but our ability to affect it via realistic wall-based control strategies is not progressing comparably. The talk will focus on active, open-loop techniques owing to their relative simplicity and remarkable electiveness, particularly in terms of net savings. Open questions (like how to extrapolate the available laboratory data to applications where the typical value of the Reynolds number are very high) and critical methodological issues (like how to compare a turbulent ow with one with drag reduction) will be discussed.


Maurizio Quadrio, PhD, is Full Professor of Fluid Dynamics at Politecnico di Milano, Department of Aerospace Science of Technologies, where he directs the Flow Control Laboratory, and teaches courses related to Fluid Dynamics, Fluid Instability, and Modelling, Physics and Numerical Simulation of Turbulence. He is also Mercator Fellow at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.

His scientific interests have always been centred on flow control, and in particular techniques for the mitigation of turbulence friction drag, with a focus on their energetic (in) efficiency. Laboratory experiments and - more frequently - Direct Numerical Simulations of turbulent wall flows are the research tools of choice. A few years ago he discovered the travelling waves of spanwise forcing, which are among the best techniques energy-wise. More recently, he got involved in a further significant research thread on the subject of aerodynamics of the human nasal cavities.

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When & where

3.00pmFriday 21st October 2016

AG01 College Building City, University of London St John Street London EC1V 4PB United Kingdom