Control of flow separation using electromagnetic forces

Control of flow separation using electromagnetic forces

Weier, T.; Gerbeth, G.; Mutschke, G.; Lielausis, O.; Lammers, G.


If a fluid is electrically conductive, its flow may be controlled using electromagnetic forces. Meanwhile, this technique is a recognized tool even on an industrial scale for handling highly conductive materials like liquid metals.
However, also fluids of low electrical conductivity as considered in the present study, like sea--water and other electrolytes, permit electromagnetic flow control. Experimental results on the prevention of flow separation by means of a streamwise, wall parallel Lorentz force acting on the suction side of inclined flat plates and hydrofoils will be presented.

Force Configuration
The stripwise arrangement of permanent magnets and electrodes of alternating magnetization direction and polarity shown in Fig. 1 was proposed by Gailitis and Lielausis (1961). It generates a wall parallel force with a maximum value directly at the wall, decaying exponentially with the wall distance. Due to the low electrical conductivity, both electric and magnetic fields have to be applied to generate a Lorentz force of adequate strength. The width of the electrodes is equal to that of the magnets and
determines the penetration of the force into the flow. The ratio of electromagnetic to inertial force can be characterized by the interaction parameter. In analogy to the terminology used in separation control by blowing, one may also define an electrohydrodynamic momentum coefficient.

Results and Discussion
A downstream directed force adds momentum to the flow and accelerates the fluid in the vicinity of the wall. This flow acceleration may be used to counteract the energy loss due to friction and adverse pressure gradients. Actually, a streamwise Lorentz force has already been successfully applied to control the flow around a circular cylinder in Weier et al. (1998). The two inserts in Fig. 2 show the flow around an inclined flat plate. In the lower left photograph, the unforced separated flow is visible, whereas the upper subfigure depicts the fully attached flow under the action of a suction side Lorentz force. The graph indicates that the interaction
parameter, necessary to completely suppress separation, decreases with increasing chord length Reynolds number. The effect of a suction side Lorentz force on lift and drag of NACA--0017--like hydrofoils has been quantified by means of force balance measurements. Depending on the inclination angle, two different effects are observed. At small angles of incidence, a moderate lift increase due to additional circulation is observed. Simultaneously, caused by the added momentum, the drag is decreased. At higher angles of attack, where the unforced hydrofoil would normally stall, a more pronounced lift increase occurs.
Fig. 3 shows the lift gained by the suction side Lorentz force at a fixed inclination angle of 17. Here delta CL is the difference of the lift coefficients of the forced and the unforced hydrofoil at the specified chord length Reynolds number. The shape of the curve as well as the total values of the lift gain and the momentum coefficient resemble the behavior found in separation control experiments with steady blowing. In the presentation, a complementary discussion on scaling issues based on experiments with a NACA 0015 hydrofoil will be given.

  • Lecture (Conference)
    IUTAM Symposium on Unsteady Separated Flows, April 8-12, 2002, Toulouse, France

Publ.-Id: 4117