Airfoil Boundary Layer

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This video shows the turbulent boundary layer on a NACA 0010 airfoil at high angle of attack (15 degrees). Notice how substantial the variations are in the boundary layer over time. At one instant the boundary layer is thick and smoke-filled and in another we see freestream fluid (non-smoke) reaching nearly to the surface. This variability, known as intermittency, is characteristic of turbulent flows, and is part of what makes them difficult to model.

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