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Pergamon 1nr J ~on~L;near hkchonxs. Vol. 30, No. 5, pp.

711-717, 1995
Copyright 0 1995 Elscvier Science Ltd
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002&7462/95$9.50+ 0.00

0020-7462(95)00030-5

UNSTEADY VISCOUS FLOW BETWEEN ECCENTRIC


ROTATING DISKS

M. Emin Erdogan
ITU Makina Fakiiltesi, 80191, GiimiiQsuyu, Istanbul, Turkey

(Received 2 June 1994; in revised form 20 February 1995)

Abstract-An exact solution of the time-dependent Navier-Stokes equations is obtained for the flow
between eccentric rotating disks. It is shown that the flow can be two-dimensional if a convenient
initial condition is specified, although when the disks are impulsively started from rest, the flow
becomes three-dimensional. An analytical solution describing the flow at small and large times after
the start is obtained by the Laplace transform method.

1. INTRODUCTION

The viscous flow between eccentric rotating disks has been considered by a number of
workers. The possibility of an exact solution of the Navier-Stokes equations for this type of
flow has been implied by Berker [ 11. He has considered the flow between two disks which
are rotating with the same angular velocity. However, the work by Berker has been omitted
in recent papers [2,3] (see the footnote in [4, p. 1921). Since, for this type of flow, an infinite
number of solutions exist, a single unique solution requires an extra condition. The
condition assumed [S] is that the flow is symmetric according to the origin. Parter and
Rajagopal [6] proved that when the disks rotate with different angular velocities about
distinct axes or a common axis there is a one parameter family of solutions. Lai et al. [7]
exhibited numerically three-dimensional flow between parallel plates which are rotating
about a common axis or about distinct axes. Knight [8] investigated the inertia effects of the
non-Newtonian flow between eccentric disks rotating at different speeds. The flow of
a second order fluid between rotating parallel plates was considered by Rajagopal [9]. The
stability of this type of flow, using the energy method, was investigated for Newtonian fluid
[S] and for second order fluid [lo]. Magnetohydrodynamic flow between eccentric rotating
disks with the same angular velocity was investigated by Mohanty [3], assuming that the
induced magnetic field is smaller than the applied magnetic field. An extension of this type
of flow to a micropolar fluid was given by Rao and Kasiviswanathan [l l] in the case of
symmetric flow.
In order to generalise the work by Berker [S] to the case of unsteady motions, Rao and
Kasiviswanathan [ 121 have considered the flow of an incompressible viscous fluid between
two eccentric rotating disks for which the streamlines at a given instant are concentric
circles in each plane parallel to a fixed plane and each point of the plane is performing
non-torsional oscillations.
In the present paper, the initial condition which makes the flow two-dimensional is
investigated. It is assumed that both disks are initially rotating about the z-axis (Fig. 1) with
the same angular velocity R and at time t = 0 one disk starts to rotate suddenly about the
z’-axis and the other disk about the z”-axis with the same angular velocity R. It is shown
that under the condition considered the velocity field becomes two-dimensional. However,
if the disks are initially at rest, and they start to rotate non-coaxially about the axes with the
same angular velocity at time t = 0, the velocity field becomes three-dimensional, which is
not considered here.
An analytical solution describing the flow at small and large times after the start is
obtained by the Laplace transform method. The velocity field is given in the form of a series

Contributed by K. R. Rajagopal.

711
712 M. Emin Erdofian

AZ’

zq

d
s

0
*Y

-d 5

,I
Z

Fig. 1. Flow geometry.

expansion which is rapidly convergent for large times but slowly convergent for small
times. For small times, the method given in [13] is useful. It is denoted that the velocity
field is obtained in the form of a series expansion in terms of the complementary error
functions. It is expected that the time required for the two-dimensional flow considered in
the present paper to attain steady-state is long. However, one estimates that if the disks were
initially at rest, then the flow becomes three-dimensional and the time required would be
shorter than the previous case. If the disks are initially at rest, and they start impulsively to
rotate non-coaxially about the axes with the same angular velocity or different angular
velocities, then the velocity field becomes a three-dimensional field. Furthermore, if
the disks rotate with different angular velocities, then the steady-state velocity field becomes
a three-dimensional one. Therefore, the investigation of this type of flow requires
the calculation of the three-dimensional velocity field of the flow between two rotating
disks about a common axis. Since the aim of this paper is to investigate the two-dimensional
unsteady flow between eccentric rotating disks, three-dimensional flow is not c%%dered
here.

2. BASIC EQUATIONS
An incompressible viscous fluid filling the space between two disks is considered. The
z-axis is perpendicular to the plane of the disks and the upper and lower disks are given by
z = d and z = -d, respectively. The upper disk rotates about the point Pi(0, 1,d) and the
lower disk rotates about the point Pz(O, -I, -d), and the middle point of p;P; is taken as
the origin (Fig. 1). The disks are initially rotating about the z-axis with the same angular
velocity R, and at time t = 0 the upper disk suddenly starts to rotate about the z’-axis with
the same angular velocity n and the lower disk suddenly starts to rotate about the z”-axis
Flowbetweeneccentricrotatingdisks 713

with the same angular velocity R (Fig. 1). Therefore, the boundary and initial conditions
can be written in the following form:

u = -n(y - I), v=& atz=d fort>0

11 = -n(y + I), v=Rx atz=-d fort>0

u = -Ry, v=Qx att=O for -d<z<d. (2.1)

Under the conditions given by equation (2.1) the velocity field becomes two-dimensional.
However, if the disks are initially at rest, and at the time t = 0 they suddenly start to rotate
noncoaxially about the axes with the same angular velocity, the velocity field becomes
a three-dimensional one. This type of flow field is very complicated and it is not considered
here.
The boundary and the initial conditions given by equation (2.1) suggest that the compo-
nents u and v of the velocity can be written as

u = -Ry +f(z, t), v = Rx + g(z, t). (2.2)

Substituting equation (2.2) in the Navier-Stokes equations, one obtains

a*f a-
v,z,-f+ag=cl (2.3)

vgpf=c,.
Introducing equation (2.2) into (2.1), one obtains

f(d, t) = QI, g(d, t) = 0 for t > 0


f( -d, t) = -RI, g(-d,t)=O fort>0

f(d, t) = 0, g(z,O)=O for -d<z<d. (2.5)

The symmetric solution is assumed and then one can write

j-(0, t) = 0, g(0, t) = 0. (2.6)

Introducing F = (f/M) + i(g/Q, equations (2.3) and (2.4) can be written in the following
form:
vE_E-ifiJ’=C (2.7)
az2 at 7

and the initial and the boundary conditions (2.5) and the symmetry condition (2.6)
become
F(0, t) = 0, F(fd,t) = Tl, F(z, 0) = 0. (2.8)

It will be shown that the symmetry condition gives C1 = C2 = 0. Putting

equation (2.7) can be written as

a2H aH
v_;----_ ceint
(2.9
azL at
The conditions (2.8) become
H(0, t) = 0, H( +d, t) = fear, H(z, 0) 7 0. (2.10)

The Laplace transform of H(z, t) is defined by the relation

$ji= He-“‘dt.
714 M. Emin Erdogan

Equations (2.9) and (2.10) then take the forms

H(O)= 0, H(Td) = +L
-ii2 - s’
where primes denote differentiation with respect to z. The solution which satisfies the
boundary condition is

fi=__- 1
iR - s

The solution shows that C = 0 and then CI = Cz = 0. The solution is convenient for
large s, namely, for small times. However, for large times it is convenient to follow the
equation
2
vg-g--i*F=O,

which is equation (2.7) with C = 0. The Laplace transform F takes the form

VP” - sF - iM = 0,

where primes denote differentiation with respect to z. By the boundary condition for F, one
obtains

,_,sinh[(f+i:r”z]

’ sinh[(: + itr”d]’

For large times, one can write

~ = sinh[(i:)l”z] + O(s)

ssinh[(iF)l”d] + 0(s2)’

The inverse of F is

sinh
F=
sinh

This is well-known steady-state form that will be discussed later.

3. SOLUTIONS FOR SMALL AND LARGE TIMES


For small times the method given in [ 133 is very useful. Small times correspond to large s.
Then H given in the previous section can be written as

1 1 e
-
J ;(d-z)
-e
-J f(d+r)
=-
S
L-!!! -2 sd
S l-e J y
Flow between eccentric rotating disks 715

~$o(~]5,e-2m&d e-kU-d_e-kUt8
=-

The inverse of Z? is [ 131


1 .

H = 2 f (- 1)“‘%“(4t)”
n=Onl=o
i2”erfc2md +d-z
2J;t - 2fi 1’
i2”erfc 2md + d + Z
(3.1)

where
m
i”erfcx = in-‘erfc<dl
sx
m
ierfcx = erfcl d5
lx
i” erfc x = erfc x.

For m = 0, n = 0 one obtains

f
-=erfcff-$cos*t, $= -erfc$sin!&. (3.2)
Rl V V

For large times the method given in [14] can be used. The solution of equation (2.7)
subjected to the condition (2.8) can be written in the following form:

sinh kz
F(z,0 = sinh + G(z,t),

where k = (Q/2~)“~(1 + i) and the first term on the right-hand side is the steady-state
solution, and G(z, t) shows the departure from steady-state and G satisfies the differential
equation, which is
vd2G_dG_iQG=O 3 (3.3)
az2 at

with

G(0, t) = 0, G( +d, t) = 0, G(z, 0) = -ff&


The solution of equation (3.3) may be written as

G(z, t) = t A,e-““sin 7,
n=1

where A2 = (n2n2/d2) + iR, and the coefficient A, can be found from the initial condition,
which is
sinh kz
ngI A,e-“” sin!!!?d = _-.
sinh kd

The velocity distribution is then given by

(3.4)
716 M. Emin Erdogan

This series solution is rapidly convergent for Rt $ 1, and it is not well suited to the
computation for at < 1, since it is slowly convergent for Rt<< 1. However, a solution for
Rt $ 1 can be obtained by the relation F = Hexp(iRt) in the following form:

f
G+ i& = H(cosnt + isinnt),

where H is given by equation (3.1). For large times the components of the velocity can be
written in the form

f PWW + Q(UQ(C)
ii= A

1
2(-l)“n7t
+ “El [ n47t4 + R2
(n ’ II2 cos T - R sin r) e -+* n2r’R)sin nrr[ (3.5)

g WW) - QU>Q(O
Ei= A

+ “El ,‘4’,;‘In,:
(n2n2sinr + Rcosz)e-(“‘nP”R)sinnkr
1, (34

where

P({)=sinhJlcosEi, Q(c)=cosh&isinfiC

R=51dZ 4=;, z = Qt.


v ’

The variations of f/X and g/RI with the non-dimensional distance [ for various values of
the non-dimensional time r are denoted in Fig. 2. It is expected that the time required for

-1.0
Fig. 2. The variations of f/ill and g/RI with C for various values of T (R = 8). - s=o.5;
--- r=2;-.-.- 7=a.
Flow between eccentric rotatingdisks 717
the flow to become steady-state will increase. For a given Reynolds number, the velocity
profiles oscillate around the profile which belongs to steady-state. The duration of this
oscillation increases with the Reynolds number. For T = 1, 5 = 0.6 and R = 8, equation (3.1)
givesf/QI = 0.3679. The exact value calculated by equation (3.5) isf/RI = 0.3696, so that,
for small times, equation (3.1) can be used instead of equation (3.5).

4. CONCLUSIONS
When two disks are initially at rest, and at time t = 0 they suddenly start to rotate
non-coaxially about the axes with the same angular velocity or different angular velocities,
the velocity field becomes a three-dimensional one. However, if the disks are initially
rotating about the z-axis with the same angular velocity R and at time t = 0 one disk
suddenly starts to rotate about the z’-axis and the other disk about the z/‘-axis with the
same angular velocity R, then the velocity field becomes a two-dimensional one (Fig. 1). An
exact solution for this two-dimensional unsteady flow is given. This solution describing the
flow for small and large times after the start is obtained by the Laplace transform method.
The velocity field is given in the form of a series expansion which is rapidly convergent for
Rt B 1. The variations of the x- and y-component of the velocity with non-dimensional
distance 5 for various values of non-dimensional time z are denoted in Fig. 2. The curves in
Fig. 2 show that the time required for the flow to attain steady-state is long. If the Reynolds
number increases the time required for the flow to become steady-state increases.

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2. T. N. G. Abbotand K. Walters,J. Fluid Me&. 40, 205-213 (1970).
3. H. K. Mohanty, Phys. Fluids 15, 1456-1458 (1972).
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5. R. Berker, Int. J. Engng Sci. 20,217-230 (1982).
6. S. V. Parter and K. R. Rajagopal, Arch. Rat. Mech. Anal. 86,305-315 (1984).
7. C. Y. Lai, K. R. Rajagopal and A. Z. Szeri, J. Fluid Mech. 146, 203-225 (1984).
8. D. G. Knight, Z. angew. Math. Phys. 31, 309-317 (1980).
9. K. R. Rajagopal, J. Non-Newtonian Fluid Me&. 9, 185-190 (1981).
10. K. R. Rajagopal and A. S. Gupta, Int. J. Engng Sci. 19, 140-1409 (1981).
11. A. R. Rao and S. R. Kasiviswanathan, Int. J. Engng Sci. 25,444-453 (1987).
12. A. R. Rao and S. R. Kasiviswanathan, Int. J. Engng Sci. 25,337-349 (1987).
13. H. S. Carslaw and J. C. Jaeger, Conduction of Heat in Solids. Oxford University Press, Oxford (1959).
14. G. K. Batchelor, An Introduction to Fluid Dynamics. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (1967).