Mixed boundary layer skin friction and heat transfer with abrupt Transition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In the form that is commonly published in introductory textbooks, the classical problem of skin friction and heat transfer for a mixed laminar-turbulent boundary-layer flow on a flat-plate with an abrupt transition is nonconservative in mass, momentum, and energy. By forcing continuity in momentum and enthalpy thicknesses, the textbook problem takes on the appearance of conserving momentum and energy. But, by doing so while retaining a turbulent virtual origin at the plate's leading edge, the textbook example omits necessary jumps in these quantities and violates conservation of mass, momentum, and energy in the flow. Here we modify this classical problem to satisfy conservation principles through the introduction of either concentrated mass/momentum/ energy fluxes, at the top of the boundary layer and/or concentrated surface shear stress/heat fluxes at the bottom. Out of this simple analysis comes the intriguing idea of an entrainment flux or inflow at the top of the boundary layer over the transition region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number114501
JournalJournal of Heat Transfer
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2014


  • Laminar-Turbulent Transition
  • Mixed Boundary Layer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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