JOURNAL OF FLUID MECHANICS, vol.423, pp.345-380, 2000 (Journal Indexed in SCI)
The separation of the laminar boundary layer from a convex corner on a rigid body contour in transonic flow is studied based on the asymptotic analysis of the Navier–Stokes equations at large values of the Reynolds number. It is shown that the flow in a small vicinity of the separation point is governed, as usual, by strong interaction between the boundary layer and the inviscid part of the flow. Outside the interaction region the Kármán–Guderley equation describing transonic inviscid flow admits a self-similar solution with the pressure on the body surface being proportional to the cubic root of the distance from the separation point. Analysis of the boundary layer driven by this pressure shows that as the interaction region is approached the boundary layer splits into two parts: the near-wall viscous sublayer and the main body of the boundary layer where the flow is locally inviscid. It is interesting that contrary to what happens in subsonic and supersonic flows, the displacement effect of the boundary layer is primarily due to the inviscid part. The contribution of the viscous sublayer proves to be negligible to the leading order. Consequently, the flow in the interaction region is governed by the inviscid–inviscid interaction. To describe this flow one needs to solve the Kármán–Guderley equation for the potential flow region outside the boundary layer; the solution in the main part of the boundary layer was found in an analytical form, thanks to which the interaction between the boundary layer and external flow can be expressed via the corresponding boundary condition for the Kármán–Guderley equation. Formulation of the interaction problem involves one similarity parameter which in essence is the Kármán–Guderley parameter suitably modified for the flow at hand. The solution of the interaction problem has been constructed numerically.