Experiments on the unsteadiness associated with a ground vortex

J. M. Cimbala, M. L. Billet, D. P. Gaublomme, J. C. Oefelein

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35 Scopus citations


The ground vortex formed by a jet impinging on the ground in the presence of a crossflow has been studied experimentally. High speed motion pictures and spectral measurements were obtained to study the unsteady features of this flowfield. A very low-frequency pulsation or "puffing" instability was observed. Since this unsteadiness could not be correlated with any other oscillations in the flowfield, the low-frequency oscillations must come from the gross features of the ground vortex itself. Namely, jet fluid accumulates in the ground vortex until the vortex is so large that the flowfield breaks up, the ground vortex is swept away, a new smaller vortex forms, and the process repeats itself. Measurements of the frequency of these oscillations are presented for the first time, and data on the vertical extent (height) of the ground vortex are also shown.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-267
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Aircraft
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering


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