Modelling of confined vortex rings

Ionut Danaila, F. Kaplanski, Sergei Sazhin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper is focused on the investigation of vortex rings evolving in a tube. A new theoretical model for a confined axisymmetric vortex ring is developed. The predictions of this model are shown to be in agreement with available experimental data and numerical simulations. The model combines the viscous vortex ring model, developed by Kaplanski and Rudi (Kaplanski & Rudi 2005), with Brasseur’s (Brasseur 1979) approach to derive a wall-induced streamfunction correction. Using the power-law assumption for the time variation of the viscous length of the vortex ring, the time variations of the main integral characteristics, circulation, kinetic energy and translational velocity, are obtained. Direct numerical simulations (DNS) are used to test the range of applicability of the model and to investigate new physical features of confined vortex rings recently reported in the experimental study by Stewart et al. (2012). The model is shown to lead to a very good approximation of the spatial distribution of the Stokes streamfunction, obtained by DNS. The vortex signature and the time evolution of the energy of the vortex are also accurately predicted by the model. A procedure for fitting the model with realistic vortex rings, obtained by DNS, is suggested. This opens the way to using the model for practical engineering applications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-297
Number of pages31
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jun 2015

Bibliographical note

© 2015 Cambridge University Press


  • general fluid mechanics
  • vortex dynamics
  • vortex flows


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