In this work a numerical investigation of the main flow field characteristics around a free oscillating rigid circular cylinder immersed in a turbulent flow is proposed (Re ≈ 5 · 104). The cylinder is characterized by high value of mass ratio and mass damping (m* = 145; ξ = 0.6 ÷ 1.14 · 10−3; m*ξ = 0.1 ÷ 0.25). The numerical results are compared with experimental data obtained in the wind tunnel under very similar fluid dynamic conditions. There are few works in literature that consider both numerical and experimental results under these conditions. This is probably due to the experimental facilities limitations and the computational difficulties correlated to modeling the flow at high Reynolds number. A numerical URANS model was developed through a CFD commercial code using a k–ω SST turbulence model in a 3D domain with the aim of matching the experimental results in the last years in the Politecnico di Milano Wind Tunnel on a suspended oscillating cylinder.
The numerical setup is characterized by the use of the DFBI-Morphing (Dynamic Fluid Body Interaction) model that allows reproducing the body motion in response to fluid forces treating the cylinder as a mass-damping-spring system by introducing spring and damping forces acting on it.
A preliminary check of this numerical setup was provided by a benchmark case involving a simple case of fixed cylinder at the same Reynolds number, where the movements of the cylinder were disabled. The numerical results of this case have been compared with experimental and numerical results reported in literature in terms of Drag and Lift coefficients and Strouhal number at high Reynolds numbers (Re ≈ 5 · 104). After that benchmark, the full setup has been checked by considering specific fluid dynamic conditions out of the lock in region in which the oscillations of the cylinder are negligible.
Finally two points of the cylinder steady state response curve in the lock in region were investigated. The numerical model gave good results in terms of amplitude response of the cylinder and aerodynamic forces in agreement with experimental results.
The analysis of the numerical reconstruction of the flow field evolution are therefore considered to have more information on the vortex shedding mode especially in the transition region between 2S and 2P mode.