Some Special Cases; Couette and. Poiseuille Flows

The resistance arising from the want of lubricity in the parts of a fluid is, other things being equal, proportional to the velocity with which the parts of the fluid are separated from one another.

Isaac Newton, 1687, from Section IX of Book II of his Principia

16.1 Introduction

The general equations of viscous flow were derived and discussed in Chapter 15. In particular, the viscous flow momentum equations were treated in Section 15.4 and are given in partial differential equation form by Equations (15.19a to c)—the Navier-Stokes equations. These, along with the viscous flow energy equation, Equa­tion (15.26), derived in Section 15.5, are the theoretical tools for the study of viscous flows. However, examine these equations closely; as discussed in Section 15.7, they are a system of coupled, nonlinear partial differential equations—equations which contain more terms and which are inherently more elaborate than the inviscid flow equations treated in Parts 2 and 3 of this book. Three classes of solutions of these equations were itemized in Section 15.5. The first itemized class was that of “exact” solutions of the Navier-Stokes equations for a few specific physical problems which, by their physical and geometrical nature, allow many terms in the governing equations to be precisely zero, resulting in a system of equations simple enough to solve, either analytically or by simple numerical methods. Such exact problems are the subject of this chapter.

Reynolds analogy

The road map for this chapter is given in Figure 16.1. The types of flows consid­ered here are generally labeled as parallel flows because the streamlines are straight and parallel to each other. We will consider two of these flows, Couette and Poiseuille, which will be defined in due course. In addition to representing exact solutions of the Navier-Stokes equations, these flows illustrate some of the important practical facets of any viscous flow, as itemized on the right side of the road map. In a clear, uncom­plicated fashion, we will be able to calculate and study the surface skin friction and heat transfer. We will also use the results to define the recovery factor and Reynolds analogy—two practical engineering tools that are frequently used in the analysis of skin friction and heat transfer.

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