The effect of wall suction on the turbulent flow of air in a porous tube has been studied. Measurements of the radial distribution of the turbulent velocity fluctuations were obtained over a range of Reynolds numbers from 104 to 2 × 105. Various suction rates were employed, for both local suction over a short length of tube and continuous suction over various lengths. The results obtained for local suction (step reduction in Reynolds number) show that approximately 40 dia are required for the turbulent velocity fluctuations to reach flow equilibrium at the lower downstream value of the Reynolds number. The results for the case of continuous suction show that after a short suction length, there is an apparent increase in the turbulence level compared with that found at the same Reynolds number with no suction. This appears to be due to the greater turbulence level which exists at the higher (presuction) Reynolds number. Longer suction lengths, above 40 dia, always result in a decrease in the turbulence level compared with turbulent flow with no suction at the same Reynolds number. The present results suggest that simple mixing-length models, incorporating local flow parameters, may be inadequate to describe the turbulent momentum transport in a tube with surface suction. Certainly, the existing mixing-length models should be re-examined in the light of this new experimental data.

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