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The logarithmic law of the wall is a self similar solution for the mean velocity parallel to the wall,

and is valid for flows at high Reynolds numbers in an overlap region with approximately
constant shear stress and far enough from the wall for (direct) viscous effects to be negligible

y+
u+
w

C+
ln

is the wall coordinate: the distance y to the wall, made dimensionless with the friction
velocity u and kinematic viscosity ,
is the dimensionless velocity: the velocity u parallel to the wall as a function of y (distance from the
wall), divided by the friction velocity u,
is the wall shear stress,
is the fluid density,
is called the friction velocity or shear velocity
is the Von Krmn constant,
is a constant, and
is the natural logarithm.

From experiments, the Von Krmn constant is found to be 0.41 and C+5.0 for a smooth
wall.[3]
With dimensions, the logarithmic law of the wall can be written as:[4]
where y0 is the distance from the boundary at which the idealized velocity given by the
law of the wall goes to zero. This is necessarily nonzero because the turbulent velocity
profile defined by the law of the wall does not apply to the laminar sublayer. The distance
from the wall at which it reaches zero is determined by comparing the thickness of the
laminar sublayer with the roughness of the surface over which it is flowing. For a nearwall laminar sublayer of thickness and a characteristic roughness length-scale ks,[2]
: hydraulically smooth flow,
: transitional flow,
: hydraulically rough flow.
Intuitively, this means that if the roughness elements are hidden within the laminar
sublayer, they have a much different effect on the turbulent law of the wall velocity
profile than if they are sticking out into the main part of the flow.
This is also often more formally formulated in terms of a boundary Reynolds
number, Rew, where
The flow is hydraulically smooth for Rew <3, hydraulically rough for Rew >100,
and transitional for intermediate values.[2]
Values for y0 are given by:[2][5]
for hydraulically smooth flow
for hydraulically rough flow.
Intermediate values are generally given by the empirically derived Nikuradse
diagram,[2] though analytical methods for solving for this range have also
been proposed.[6]
For channels with a granular boundary, such as natural river systems,

where D84 is the average diameter of the 84th largest percentile of the
grains of the bed material.[7]

Power law solutions[edit]


Work by Barenblatt and others has shown that besides the logarithmic
law of the wall the limit for infinite Reynolds numbers there exist
power-law solutions, which are dependent on the Reynolds number.[8]
[9]

In 1996, Cipra submitted experimental evidence in support of these

power-law descriptions.[10] This evidence itself has not been fully


accepted by other experts.[11] In 2001, Oberlack claimed to have derived
both the logarithmic law of the wall, as well as power laws, directly from
the Reynolds-averaged NavierStokes equations, exploiting the
symmetries in a Lie group approach.[3][12] However, in 2014, Frewer et al.
[13]

refuted these results.