May 2023

The paper Coherent structures at the origin of time irreversibility in wall turbulence, by G. Iacobello, S. Chowdhuri, L. Ridolfi, L. Rondoni, S. Scarsoglio has been published in Communications Physics, 6(1), 91 (2023).



Time irreversibility is a distinctive feature of non-equilibrium phenomena such as turbulent flows, where irreversibility is mainly associated with an energy cascade process. The connection between time irreversibility and coherent motions in wall turbulence, however, has not been investigated yet. An Eulerian, multiscale analysis of time irreversibility in wall-bounded turbulence is proposed in this study, which differs from previous works relying on a Lagrangian approach and mainly focusing on homogeneous turbulence. Outcomes reveal a strong connection between irreversibility levels and coherent structures in both turbulent channel and boundary layer flows. In the near-wall region, irreversibility is directly related to the inner spectral peak originating from small-scale turbulent structures in the buffer layer. Conversely, stronger irreversibility is found in correspondence to the outer spectral peak originating from larger turbulent flow scales far from the wall. Our results represent a first effort to characterize Eulerian TI in wall-bounded turbulent flows, thus paving the way for further developments in wall-turbulence modeling and control accounting for broken temporal symmetry. 

Full text is available here.