Near wall measurements have been performed in a zero pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer at low to moderate local Reynolds numbers using Laser-Doppler Anemometry in order to investigate how accurately the wall shear stress can be determined. Also, scaling problems are particularly difficult at low Reynolds numbers since they involve simultaneous influences of both inner and outer scales and this is most clearly observed in the near-wall region. In order to fully describe the zero pressure gradient turbulent boundary layer at low to moderate local Reynolds numbers it is necessary to accurately measure a number of quantities. These include the mean velocity and Reynolds stresses, and their spatial derivatives all the way down to the wall (y+∼1). Integral parameters that need to be measured are the wall shear stress and boundary layer thickness, particularly the momentum thickness. Problems with the measurement of field properties get worse close to a wall, and they get worse for increasing local Reynolds number. Three different approaches to measure the wall shear stress were examined. It was found that small measurement errors in the mean velocity close to the wall significantly reduced the accuracy in determining the wall shear stress by measuring the velocity gradient at the wall. The constant stress layer was found to be affected by the advection terms. However, it was found that taking the small pressure gradient into account and improving on the spatial resolution in the outer part of the boundary layer made the momentum integral method reliable.

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