Secondary optimal growth and subcritical transition in the plane Poiseuille flow

Abstract : Nonlinear optimal perturbations leading to subcritical transition with minimum threshold energy are searched in the plane Poiseuille flow at Re = 1500. To this end we proceed in two steps. First a family of optimally growing primary streaks U issued by the optimal vortices of the Poiseuille laminar solution is computed by direct numerical simulation for a set of finite amplitudes A(l) of the primary vortices. An adjoint technique is then used to compute the maximum growth and the finite time Lyapunov exponents of secondary perturbations growing on top of these primary base flows. The secondary optimals take into full account the non-normality and the local instabilities of the tangent operator all along the temporal evolution of the primary flows. The most amplified optimal perturbations are sinuous and realized in correspondence of streaks that are locally unstable. The combinations of primary and secondary perturbations optimal for transition are then explored using direct numerical simulations It is shown that the minimum initial energy is realized by a large set of these combinations, revealing new paths to transition. Surprisingly we find that transition can be efficiently obtained even using secondary perturbations alone, in the absence of primary optimal vortices
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Carlo Cossu, Mattias Chevalier, Dan S. Henningson. Secondary optimal growth and subcritical transition in the plane Poiseuille flow. Seventh Iutam Symposium On Laminar-turbulent Transition, Jun 2009, Stockholm, Sweden. pp.129-134, ⟨10.1007/978-90-481-3723-7_19⟩. ⟨hal-01025984⟩

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