Levich Institute Seminar – Tuesday, 12/07/2021


Tuesday, 12/07/2021
2:00 PM
Zoom Link:  https://ccny.zoom.us/j/

Professor Kenneth Breuer
Brown University, School of Engineering

“Instabilities, Scaling and Damping associated with Leading Edge Vortices generated from Fluid Structure Interactions”


Leading Edge Vortices (LEVs) are generated whenever a viscous flow encounters an extreme change of direction or adverse pressure gradient.  They occur in many high Reynolds number flows including aerodynamic maneuvers, flapping flight and energy harvesting applications.  In this talk I will explore some aspects of LEVs generated by interactions between the flow and elastic structures.   We will use a model aeroelastic system  – a pitching wing supported by a torsional spring – to explore these phenomena.  This system exhibits a rich range of nonlinear instabilities,  dominated by the formation, growth and separation of LEVs. In a quiescent fluid, as might be found associated with hovering hummingbird flight, the LEVs result in a nonlinear fluid damping.  If the wing is immersed in a freestream flow, negative damping can be exploited to harvest energy from the oncoming flow as an appealing alternative to conventional rotary turbines.


PhD MIT 1988
Assist/Assoc Prof MIT 1990 – 1999
Assoc/Prof, Brown University 1999 – present


Fluid mechanics with a wide range of scales and applications, ranging from microfluidics, bacterial locomotion, animal flight, energy harvesting, vortex dynamics and experimental techniques. 

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