Optimal energy density growth in Hagen–Poiseuille flow

Peter J. Schmid, Dan S. Henningson

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204 Scopus citations


Linear stability of incompressible flow in a circular pipe is considered. Use is made of a vector function formulation involving the radial velocity and radial vorticity only. Asymptotic as well as transient stability are investigated using eigenvalues and ε-pseudoeigenvalues, respectively. Energy stability is probed by establishing a link to the numerical range of the linear stability operator. Substantial transient growth followed by exponential decay has been found and parameter studies revealed that the maximum amplification of initial energy density is experienced by disturbances with no streamwise dependence and azimuthal wavenumber n = 1. It has also been found that the maximum in energy scales with the Reynolds number squared, as for other shear flows. The flow field of the optimal disturbance, exploiting the transient growth mechanism maximally, has been determined and followed in time. Optimal disturbances are in general characterized by a strong shear layer in the centre of the pipe and their overall structure has been found not to change significantly as time evolves. The presented linear transient growth mechanism which has its origin in the non-normality of the linearized Navier–Stokes operator, may provide a viable process for triggering finite-amplitude effects. © 1994, Cambridge University Press. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-225
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 25 1994
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Generated from Scopus record by KAUST IRTS on 2022-09-13

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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