A general equation for the development of secondary vorticity in a homogeneous incompressible fluid is developed by extending the analysis of Hawthorne [1]. It is shown that secondary vorticity can be generated not only through the action of a nonuniform flow field on curved streamlines, but also whenever the flow kinetics are such that the vector curl (V × Ω) has a component in the flow-wise direction. Applied to the problem of the skewed boundary layer along a plane wall the general result partially explains the experimentally observed attenuation of skewing in the viscous sublayer region. The equation is applied to the problem of secondary flow generation in sharply curved passages of appreciable depth where the deep curved channel flow configuration dominates the secondary flow. Finally, one discusses the implication of secondary vorticity development from the vector curl (V × Ω) to the problem of laminar boundary-layer instability resulting in the occurrence of a system of longitudinal vortices.

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