Confined laminar fluid jets have many practical applications in industry. Several examples include expansions in pipes and flow of gas into a large plenum. While much consideration has been given experimentally to heat transfer and pressure gradients within the confinement, little attention has been paid to quantify the velocity profiles and transitions between various flow behaviours. Using a finite volume CFD code, OpenFOAM ®, the Navier-Stokes equations were solved for varying expansion ratio, 1/ε = renclosure/rj, and varying Reynolds numbers. In the present analysis, Reynolds number based on the inlet jet diameter is varied from 30 to 70, well within the accepted range for laminar jet behavior. The expansion ratio, 1/ε is varied from 20–200. Of primary focus in the current study are compact correlations for the jet centreline velocity as a function of jet Reynolds number, Rej and expansion ratio. Similar functional dependences for the “linear” decay region of the jet, and the location of the stagnation point on the enclosure wall, are also investigated. These are all important features of the global flow field for the confined jet. Results suggest that initially, the flow characteristics are identical to a free jet. At some downstream location, the presence of the enclosure is felt by the jet and deviations begin to be seen from free jet behavior. This transition region continues until at a sufficiently large downstream location, the flow becomes fully developed, internal Poiseuille flow. In this paper, we analyse these transition regions and offer explanations and practical correlations to successfully predict the important flow physics that occur between free jet behavior and Poiseuille flow. Key dimensionless parameters are identified, the magnitude of which can be used to classify the flow conditions.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.