A Numerical Solution for the Laminar Wake Behind a Finite Flat Plate

[+] Author and Article Information
A. Plotkin

Department of Aerospace Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, Md.

I. Flügge-Lotz

Department of Engineering Mechanics, Stanford University, Stanford, Calif.

J. Appl. Mech 35(4), 625-630 (Dec 01, 1968) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3601283 History: Received May 15, 1968; Online September 14, 2011


A finite-difference solution is presented for the laminar, two-dimensional, viscous, incompressible wake behind a finite flate plate. The plate is infinitely thin and is aligned parallel to a uniform stream. The Reynolds number based on plate length is assumed large enough to allow the formation of boundary layers on the top and bottom of the plate. The wake is formed by the merging of these boundary layers at the trailing edge. The upstream influence of the trailing-edge disturbance necessitates solving the complete Navier-Stokes equations in the trailing-edge region. As yet, no satisfactory solution to the problem exists. The aim of this investigation is to calculate an improved first approximation to the solution in the trailing-edge region for high values of the Reynolds number. The solution can be continued in the downstream direction. Solutions are obtained for Reynolds numbers larger than 105 . The behavior of the flow variables in the immediate neighborhood of the trailing edge indicates the existence of a singularity at the edge. The exact nature of this singularity has not, as yet, been determined.

Copyright © 1968 by ASME
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