Residual-based turbulence models for moving boundary flows: Hierarchical application of variational multiscale method and three-level scale separation

Arif Masud, Ramon Calderer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents residual-based turbulence models for problems with moving boundaries and interfaces. The method is developed via a hierarchical application of variational multiscale ideas and the models are cast in an arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) frame to accommodate the deformation of domain boundaries. An overlapping additive decomposition of velocity and pressure fields into coarse and fine scale components leads to coarse and fine scale mixed-field problems. The problem governing fine scales is subjected to a further decomposition of the fine scale velocity into overlapping components termed as fine scales level I and level II. In turn, in the bottom-up integration of scales, the model for level II fine scales serves to stabilize the problem governing level I fine scales, and model for level I fields yields the turbulence models. From the computational perspective, the coarse scales are represented in terms of the standard Lagrange shape functions, whereas level I and level II scales are represented via quadratic and fourth order polynomial bubbles, respectively. Because of the bubble functions approach employed in the consistently derived fine scale models, the resulting method is free of any embedded or tunable parameters. The proposed turbulence models share a common feature with the LES models in that the largest scales in the flow are numerically resolved, whereas the subgrid scales are modeled. The method is applied to flow around a plunging airfoil at Re=40,000, and results are compared with experimental and numerical data published in the literature. Also presented are the results for the plunging airfoil at Re=60,000 to show the robustness and range of applicability of the method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-305
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal for Numerical Methods in Fluids
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 30 2013


  • Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian framework
  • Large Eddy simulation
  • Moving and deforming boundaries
  • Residual-based turbulence models
  • Variational multiscale method

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics


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