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MANUAL

Department of Applied Mechanics, IIT Madras

1

Introduction :

A vortex is a spinning, often turbulent, flow of fluid. Any spiral motion with closed streamlines

is vortex flow. In fluid mechanics, a distinction is often made between two limiting vortex

cases. One is called the free vortex, and the other is the forced vortex.

To study the different types of vortices, we will practice some experiments in laboratory. The

objectives of these experiments are to figure out the formation of the vortex (forced and free)

and how they are influenced.

Theory :

A.

Properties of a vortex

o The fluid pressure in a vortex is lowest in the center and rises progressively with

distance from the center. This is in accordance with Bernoulli's Principle.

o The core of every vortex can be considered to contain a vortex line, and every

particle in the vortex can be considered to be circulating around the vortex line.

Vortex lines can start and end at the boundary of the fluid or form closed loops.

They cannot start or end in the fluid. (See Helmholtz's theorems.) Vortices

readily deflect and attach themselves to a solid surface.

o Two or more vortices that are approximately parallel and circulating in the same

direction will merge to form a single vortex. The circulation of the merged

vortex will equal the sum of the circulations of the constituent vortices.

o Vortices contain a lot of energy in the circular motion of the fluid. In an ideal

fluid this energy can never be dissipated and the vortex would persist forever.

However, real fluids exhibit viscosity and this dissipates energy very slowly

from the core of the vortex. (See Rankine vortex). It is only through dissipation

of a vortex due to viscosity that a vortex line can end in the fluid, rather than at

the boundary of the fluid.

B.

Helmholtzs theorems

They describe the three-dimensional motion of fluid in the vicinity of vortex filaments.

These theorems apply to inviscid flows and flows where the influence of viscous forces

is small and can be ignored. Helmholtzs three theorems are as follows:

o Helmholtzs first theorem:

2

A vortex filament cannot end in a fluid; it must extend to the boundaries of the fluid or

form a closed path.

In the absence of rotational external forces, a fluid that is initially irrotational remains

irrotational.

the strength of the vortices always decays gradually due to the dissipative effect of

viscous forces.

Alternative expressions of the three theorems are as follows:

1. The strength of a vortex tube does not vary with time.

2. Fluid elements lying on a vortex line at some instant continue to lie on that

vortex line. More simply, vortex lines move with the fluid. Also vortex lines

and tubes must appear as a closed loop, extend to infinity or start/end at solid

boundaries.

3. Fluid elements initially free of vorticity remain free of vorticity.

C.

Vorticity

A vortex can be any circular or rotary flow. Perhaps unexpectedly, not all vortices

possess vorticity. Vorticity is a mathematical concept used in fluid dynamics. It can be

related to the amount of "circulation" or "rotation" in a fluid. In fluid dynamics,

vorticity is the circulation per unit area at a point in the flow field. It is a vector

quantity, whose direction is (roughly speaking) along the axis of the swirl. The vorticity

of a free vortex is zero whereas the vorticity of forced vortices is non-zero.

Vorticity is an approximately conserved quantity, meaning that it is not readily created

or destroyed in a flow. Therefore, flows that start with minimal vorticity, such as water

in a basin, create vortices with minimal vorticity, such as the characteristic swirling and

approximately free vortex structure when it drains.

By contrast, fluids that initially have vorticity, such as water in a rotating bowl, form

vortices with vorticity, exhibited by the much less pronounced low pressure region at

the center of this flow. Also in fluid dynamics, the movement of a fluid can be said to

be vortical if the fluid moves around in a circle, or in a helix, or if it tends to spin

around some axis. Such motion can also be called solenoidal. In the atmospheric

sciences, vorticity is a property that characterizes large-scale rotation of air masses.

3

nearly vertical, and it is common to use the vertical component as a scalar vorticity.

Mathematically, vorticity is defined as the curl of the fluid velocity :

The two most common quantities which are used to characterize rotating fluids are:

D.

Types of vortex

and

the circulation

A distinction is often made between two limiting vortex cases. One is called the free

(irrotational) vortex, and the other is the forced (rotational) vortex.

a)

When fluid is drawn down a plug-hole, one can observe the phenomenon of a free

vortex or line vortex. The tangential velocity v varies inversely as the distance r from

the center of rotation, so the angular momentum, rv, is constant; the vorticity is zero

everywhere (except for a singularity at the center-line) and the circulation about a

contour containing r = 0 has the same value everywhere. The free surface (if present)

dips sharply as the center line is approached. The tangential velocity is given by:

Where is the circulation and r is the radial distance from the center of the vortex. In

non-technical terms, the fluid near the center of the vortex circulates faster than the

fluid far from the center. The speed along the circular path of flow is held constant or

decreases as you move out from the center. At the same time the inner streamlines have

a shorter distance to travel to complete a ring.

b)

In a forced vortex the fluid essentially rotates as a solid body (there is no shear). The

motion can be realized by placing a dish of fluid on a turntable rotating at (rad/sec);

the fluid has vorticity of 2 everywhere, and the free surface (if present) is a parabola.

The tangential velocity is given by:

Where is the angular velocity and r is the radial distance from the center of the

vortex.

4

LABORATORY EXPERIMENTS

Experiment 1: Study of forced vortex without discharge orifice

Objective

Determine the influence of the inlet direction of the fluid in the system.

Equipment

Chronometer

Experimental procedure

Place the equipment in the hydraulic bench FME00 and connect it to Bench with a fast

connector in the taking T1 . Place the blind mouthpiece inside the central hollow in the base of

the cylinder . Introduce the helix with the axis in the mouthpiece, so that it turns correctly.

Close the outlet valve and connect the pump in the bench with VCC closed.

Open gradually the control valve of the hydraulic bench, open the three way valve to the left

so that the water goes into the cylinder from a tangential inlet placed 60 away and so that it

goes out through the injectors.

Start to open the outlet valve of the equipment when the water almost gets to the limit of the

overflow and level the cylinder with that level, unloading inside the volumetric tank. Fill with

water the outlet flexible hose, when it is full, pick up the hose and introduce it by the drain

spillway of the volumetric tank, in order to avoid that the bench pump runs out of the water.

This operation induces a siphon effect that increases the unload speed.

5

For each value of flux speed, the outlet valve must be adjusted until the water flows through

the overflow. Place the measure probes through the superior part of the cylinder.

The surface of the profile is determined by lowering the measure probes (needles) until they

touch the surface of the water. Then, taking as a reference the spillway level as zero and the

marks in the needles, we can get to know the depth that each probe has descended. We can also

use the diameter meter, in order to determine the vortex diameter at different levels of depth.

The rotation speed of the helix is measured by timing the number of rotations of the helix using

the axis marked as reference.

The depth of a diameter will be determined by using a needle of the height meter, and

the annexed scale as a reference.

Once the height of the different needles is registered, remove the support of the needles and

repeat the procedure for different inlet flows, graduating the VCC with both inlet pipes (turn

180 the key of the three-way valve).

Inlet

direction

Time

(s)

r.p.s

Edge

110

90

70

50

30

R (mm)

0

X (measured)

Calculated h

X1 = H0 - h

wr/2g

h

h0

6

In the experiment, the value of x has been measured for different radius. We can calculate h in

this way:

h = H0 - x [m]

Now, we just have to check that the values obtained adjust to a theoretical curve like the

following one:

h = h0 + w2.r2 /2g [m]

Measure points

Draw a graph with the points experimentally obtained of the vortex at several rotation speeds (

different flows ) and different fluid inlet directions.

Draw a graph and compare the theoretically obtained curves of the surface profile of the vortex

with the forced vortexes which are experimentally determined.

Conclusions

How are the values which are experimentally obtained, in comparison with the

theoretical ones?

What is the effect of the viscosity of the liquid in the formation of the forced vortexes?

What is the effect of the fluid inlet direction in the formation of the vortex?

What is the influence of the inlet flow in the formation of the vortex?

height of the free vortex

Objectives

Determine the surface of the profile of a forced vortex with discharge orifice

Equipment

Experimental procedure

Place the equipment inside the work channel of the Hydraulic Bench and connect it to the

bench by the fast connector to T1. Place an orifice mouthpiece inside the center of the cylinder

base. Close the outlet valve of the equipment.

Connect the pump and open gradually the control valve of the bench. Open the three-way inlet

valve so that the water goes into the recipient through the tangential pipes adjusted at 60 and

unload through the orifice inside the volumetric tank.

Adjust the outlet valve until the water flows through the overflow, this keeps the volume

constant. When it is stable, the profile of the vortex is measured as it was indicated in the

previous practice.

Place the measure bridge in the superior part of the cylinder (as it was made with the height

meter) with the Pitot tube of 15 mm radius.

Hold the scale to the Pitot tube and submerge until the measure orifice is approximately 5 mm

away from the profile of the vortex surface. Then, insert in the measurement bridge a needle in

the hole which is 15 mm from the center. With this needle, determine the depth of Pitot tube

taking, as well as the total height of the water column of the Pitot tube (from the taking to the

free surface of the fluid inside the tube). Repeat the experiment with Pitot tubes of 20 mm, 25

mm and 30 mm.

This procedure must be carried out for different inlet flows with the tangential pipe at 60 and

the radial pipe at 15. For it, we must turn 180 the key in the same way, we will proceed to

repeat the experiment for each of the orifices supplied.

In order to study the influence of the vortex on the discharge flow, we will carry out an

additional experiment which is described next: with the tangential pipe at 60, we will proceed

to fill the deposit with one of the supplied orifices. Before the water arrives at the overflow

level, playing with the inlet flow (with the VCC) and the discharge valve, it will try to

approach as much as possible the stationary regime, that is to say, the maximum height

obtained by the fluid surface should keep more or less constant. Once this is obtained, we will

turn the three way valve at 180 so that the water goes inside the radial pipes at 15. Observe

what happens with the water free surface.

Hereafter, the table of the different measurements of the vortex at several rotation speeds

(experimental and theoretical).

wr/2g

h

h0

We can calculate h in this way:

h=h0 - x [cm]

9

Now, we just have to check that the values obtained are close to a theoretical curve like the

following one

h = h0 +

Inlet

direction

2r 2

2g

cm

Flow Rate

(lt/hr)

r.p.s

Edge

110

90

70

50

Ht(mm)

HS(mm)

X(mm)

Where:

Ht is the total height of the water column of the pitot tube

Hs is the height of the water column over the point of the pitot tube

X is obtained in this way :

10

30

Therefore :x = k2/2.g.r2

From this expression we can obtain k, which must be constant in the system.

We obtain the speed of the fluid in function of the position with the following

expression :

V = K/r

Compare the theoretical profile (obtained from the calculated K) with the experimental

one.

What is the effect of the fluid inlet direction in the formation of the vortex?

What is the influence of the inlet flow in the formation of the vortex?

11

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