eCite Digital Repository

Nucleation and cavitation inception in high Reynolds number shear layers


Allan, ESC and Barbaca, L and Venning, JA and Russell, PS and Pearce, BW and Brandner, PA, Nucleation and cavitation inception in high Reynolds number shear layers, Physics of Fluids, 35 Article 013317. ISSN 1070-6631 (2023) [Refereed Article]

PDF (Published version)
Available from 21 March 2024

Copyright Statement

2023 Author(s). Published under an exclusive license by AIP Publishing.

DOI: doi:10.1063/5.0132054


The influence of nucleation on cavitation inception in a high Reynolds number shear layer in the wake of a backward-facing step was experimentally investigated in a water tunnel. The flow was investigated for two nuclei populations: the one naturally occurring in the water and for the water artificially seeded with monodisperse nuclei. Incipient events were observed to form in stretched quasi-streamwise vortices. The collapse of an incipient cavity resulted in a microbubble cloud dispersed into the shear layer and the step re-circulation zone. These microbubbles, generally larger than those naturally occurring in the water, act as preferential sites for re-nucleation, triggering the formation of developed cavitation. This phenomenon rendered statistical characterization of cavitation inception impractical for the natural nuclei population. The re-nucleation issue was addressed by seeding the flow with a population of large monodisperse nuclei, with a critical pressure higher than that of cavitation products. Spatial distribution of the nuclei within the seeded plume was characterized using a volumetric measurement based on Mie-scattering imaging. The ability to discern individual incipient events enabled examination of the effect of cavitation number and the nuclei injection rate on the inception event rate. The event rate was found to follow a power law with cavitation number and vary linearly with the injection rate. Mapping of spatial distribution of cavitation susceptibility was obtained by combining the spatial distributions of incipient events and nuclei concentration. The current work provides a valuable dataset for the development of computational tools for modeling of cavitation inception in nucleated flows.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:shear flows, cavitation inception, nuclei, nucleation
Research Division:Engineering
Research Group:Maritime engineering
Research Field:Ship and platform structures (incl. maritime hydrodynamics)
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in engineering
UTAS Author:Allan, ESC (Mrs Elizabeth Russell)
UTAS Author:Barbaca, L (Dr Luka Barbaca)
UTAS Author:Venning, JA (Dr James Venning)
UTAS Author:Russell, PS (Mr Patrick Russell)
UTAS Author:Pearce, BW (Dr Bryce Pearce)
UTAS Author:Brandner, PA (Professor Paul Brandner)
ID Code:154818
Year Published:2023
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:NC Maritime Engineering and Hydrodynamics
Deposited On:2023-01-10
Last Modified:2023-03-21

Repository Staff Only: item control page