Thermal Instability of Forced Convection Boundary Layers

[+] Author and Article Information
K. Chen

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah 84112

M. M. Chen

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana, Ill. 61801

J. Heat Transfer 106(2), 284-289 (May 01, 1984) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3246670 History: Received October 01, 1982; Online October 20, 2009


Thermal instability of forced convection boundary layers with nonzero streamwise pressure gradient is examined for moderate to high Prandtl numbers. The analysis is carried out for the family of Falkner-Skan flows, here viewed as the lowest order local similarity approximation of general forced convection boundary layers. Calculated critical Rayleigh numbers and wave numbers are found to be independent of the streamwise pressure gradient in the limiting case of infinite Prandtl number, and only weakly dependent on the streamwise pressure gradient for finite Prandtl number cases when the conduction thickness is employed as the reference length scale.

Copyright © 1984 by ASME
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