Flow visualization and transient behavior analysis of luminescent mini-tufts after a backward-facing step

Lin Chen, Tomohiro Suzuki, Taku Nonomura, Keisuke Asai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Luminescent mini-tufts method has been used for surface flow visualization for a long time. One major challenging point of this method is quantitative analysis of transient flows and the dynamic structures. This study is focused on the application of luminescent mini-tufts method in transient flows. A backward-facing step (BFS) is used in this analysis, which is one classic model that consists both flow separation and re-attachment processes. In this study, the instantaneous mini-tufts recognition, image averaging and tuft inclination angle/tuft angle estimation processes are introduced for the analysis of luminescent mini-tufts for the first time on backward-facing step flow (Rem = 2.0 × 105–7.9 × 105 and Reh = 1.3 × 104–5.3 × 104). Detailed transient features and characterization process for the backward-facing step model are explained in this study. The combination of optical-oil flow and hot-wire anemometry methods with luminescent mini-tufts are also shown useful to give comprehensive flow field information, including the surface flow behaviors, boundary layer, re-attachment position identification, etc. In addition, the decomposition of the luminescent mini-tufts visualization data is also conducted to give the power spectral density (PSD) and characteristic frequencies for the mini-tufts behaviors under transient fluctuating flow conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101657
JournalFlow Measurement and Instrumentation
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Mar


  • Backward-facing step
  • Luminescent mini-tufts
  • Separation flow
  • Transient analysis
  • Visualization


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