Effect of boattail angles on the flow pattern on an axisymmetric afterbody surface at low speed

The Hung Tran, Takumi Ambo, Taekjin Lee, Lin Chen, Taku Nonomura, Keisuke Asai

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19 Citations (Scopus)


The surface flow pattern over a conical boattail on an axisymmetric body was investigated experimentally under low-speed and turbulent-boundary-layer conditions. Seven conical boattails with the same length but different angles from 10° to 22° were tested at a Reynolds number around 4.3 × 104, based on the model diameter. The study used the global luminescent oil-film (GLOF) skin friction measurement technique. The skin friction fields were measured and the corresponding flow topologies were extracted from the GLOF measurements. The effect of oil-film thickness on the separation position was also evaluated. Experimental results showed three different flow types on the boattail surface: (1) flow without separation, (2) flow with a separation bubble, and (3) fully separated flow. The critical angles for the transitions are discussed and compared with classic results for similar boattail models. The separation bubble generated at moderate boattail angles was observed for what we believe to be the first time under low-speed conditions, and the flow topology was clearly shown by the GLOF results. The azimuthally-averaged skin friction projected on the centerline showed different trends inside and behind the reattachment position when the boattail angle increased.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)324-335
Number of pages12
JournalExperimental Thermal and Fluid Science
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec


  • Axisymmetric body
  • Boattail flow
  • Flow topology
  • GLOF
  • Skin friction


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