- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
We propose and validate a novel experimental technique to measure two-point statistics of turbulent flows. It consists of spreading rigid fibers in the flow and tracking their position and orientation in time and is therefore named “fiber tracking velocimetry.” By choosing different fiber lengths, i.e., within the inertial or dissipative range of scales, the statistics of turbulence fluctuations at the selected length scale can be probed accurately by simply measuring the fiber velocity at its two ends and projecting it along the transverse-to-fiber direction. By means of fully resolved direct numerical simulations and experiments, we show that these fiber-based transverse velocity increments are statistically equivalent to the (unperturbed) flow transverse velocity increments. Moreover, we show that the turbulent energy-dissipation rate can be accurately measured exploiting sufficiently short fibers. The technique is tested against standard particle tracking velocimetry (PTV) of flow tracers with excellent agreement. Our technique overcomes the well-known problem of PTV to probe two-point statistics reliably because of the fast relative diffusion in turbulence that prevents the mutual distance between particles to remain constant at the length scale of interest. This problem, making it difficult to obtain converged statistics for a fixed separation distance, is even more dramatic for natural flows in open domains. A prominent example is oceanic currents, where drifters (i.e., the tracer-particle counterpart used in field measurements) disperse quickly, but at the same time their number has to be limited to save costs. Inspired by our laboratory experiments, we propose pairs of connected drifters as a viable option to solve the issue. Show more
Journal / seriesPhysical Review X
Pages / Article No.
PublisherAmerican Physical Society
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