Fluid flow across a bluff body can induce a series alternating vortices in the downstream flow field. The vortex flow can produce adverse effects on many engineering applications. A number of studies have shown that the wake splitter plate is one of the means to stabilize the vortex formation process. However, most of the previous studies are confined to cylinders with attached splitter plates. Very few studies investigate the effects of the spacing between the cylinder and the splitter plate on the formation of wake vortices. In the present study, the effects of the splitter plate length as well as the gap distance between the splitter plate and the cylinder on the wake flow behind a cylinder have been studied experimentally for low Reynolds number of 400. Both circular and square cylinders are studied in this research. Four splitter plates with different length, 1 ≤ L/D ≤ 4, have been used and a range of cylinder and splitter plate gap distance, 0 < G/D < 6, have been studied. By using flow visualization technique and hot-film anemometer measurement, detailed measurements of the velocity distribution, the vortex shedding frequency, the wake width, and the wake formation length are carried out in order to get a clear understanding of the flow interference behavior. The experimental results indicate that splitter plates alter the vortex formation process in the wake causing a decrease in vortex shedding frequency. The Strouhal number decreases with increasing the splitter plate length as well as the gap distance between the cylinder and the splitter plate. It is shown that a jump in Strouhal number occurs at G/D of 3 to 6. The jump is splitter plate length dependent, and generally the gap distance at which jump takes place increases as the splitter plate length increases.

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