AuthorsD. G. E. Grigoriadis, I. E. Sarris and S. C. Kassinos
TitleMHD Flow Past a Circular Cylinder Using the Immersed Boundary Method
AfilliationCenter for Biomedical Computing (SFF), Scientific Computing
Project(s)Center for Biomedical Computing (SFF)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
JournalComputers & Fluids
Date PublishedFebruary

The immersed boundary method (IB hereafter) is an efficient numerical methodology for treating purely hydrodynamic flows in geometrically complicated flow-domains. Recently Grigoriadis et als. [1] proposed an extension of the IB method that accounts for electromagnetic effects near non-conducting boundaries in magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) flows. The proposed extension (hereafter called MIB method) integrates naturally within the original IB concept and is suitable for magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations of liquid metal flows. It is based on the proper definition of an externally applied current density field in order to satisfy the Maxwell equations in the presence of arbitrarily-shaped, non-conducting immersed boundaries. The efficiency of the proposed method is achieved by fast direct solutions of the two poisson equations for the hydrodynamic pressure and the electrostatic potential. The purpose of the present study is to establish the performance of the new MIB method in challenging configurations for which sufficient details are available in the literature. For this purpose, we have considered the classical MHD problem of a conducting fluid that is exposed to an external magnetic field while flowing across a circular cylinder with electrically insulated boundaries. Two- and three-dimensional, steady and unsteady, flow regimes were examined for Reynolds numbers Red ranging up to 200 based on the cylinder's diameter. The intensity of the external magnetic field, as characterized by the magnetic interaction parameter N, varied from N=0 for the purely hydrodynamic cases up to N=5 for the MHD cases. For each simulation, a sufficiently fine Cartesian computational mesh was selected to ensure adequate resolution of the thin boundary layers developing due to the magnetic field, the so called Hartmann and sidewall layers. Results for a wide range of flow and magnetic field strength parameters show that the MIB method is capable of accurately reproducing integral parameters, such as the lift and drag coefficients, as well as the geometrical details of the recirculation zones. The results of the present study suggest that the proposed MIB methodology provides a powerful numerical tool for accurate MHD simulations, and that it can extend the applicability of existing Cartesian flow solvers as well as the range of computable MHD flows. Moreover, the new MIB method has been used to carrry out a series of accurate simulations allowing the determination of asymptotic laws for the lift and drag coefficients and the extent of the recirculation length as a function of the amplitude of the magnetic field. These results are reported herein.


Appeared online 2009.