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1.0 TITLE
Flat plate boundary layer

2.0 INTRODUCTION
Fluid flow is often confined by solid surfaces, and it is important to understand how the
presence of solid surfaces affects fluid flow. Consider the flow of a fluid over a solid surface and
the fluid is in direct contact with the surface with no slip. This is known as no-slip condition. By
looking at the velocity gradient, the layer becomes slowed down from one to another. This is
because of viscous forces between fluid layers. A consequence of the no-slip condition is that all
velocity profiles must have zero values with respect to the surface at the points of contact
between a fluid and a solid surface. The flow region adjacent to the wall in which the viscous
effects are significant is called the boundary layer.

3.0 OBJECTIVES
3.1. To measured the boundary layer velocity layer and observed the growth of the boundary
layer for the flat plate with smooth and rough surface
3.2. To measured the boundary layer properties for the measured velocity profile
3.3. To studied the effect of surface roughness on the development of the boundary layer

4.0 THEORY BACKGROUND
Classical theory of real fluid flow that has been tested by experimental has shown that when a fluid
flows over a surface there is no slip at the surface. The fluid in contact with the surface stays with it.
The relative velocity increases from zero at the surface to that of the free stream some little distance
away from the surface. The fluid in this small distance is called Boundary Layer.
Consider a steady stream of fluid moving from left to right over a smooth plate. The free stream
velocity, U, is constant over the entire plate. It is found that the boundary layer grows in thickness
the further we travel downstream.
U
U
Turbulence
Transition
Laminar
U

Figure 1: Boundary Layer growth
The initial motion is laminar with a gradual increase in thickness. If the plate is sufficiently long a
transition to turbulence occurs.
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Laminar Boundary Layer
In laminar boundary layer the flow is steady and smooth. Consequently the layer is thin. This give
rise to drag. The velocity gradient is moderate and although significant viscous stresses exist is too
small, so that skin friction is very small.
Turbulence Boundary Layer
In turbulence boundary layer the flow is unsteady and not smooth, but eddying. When specifying
velocities, we must consider mean values over a small time interval and not instantaneous values as
before. The distribution of mean velocity in any one time interval is the same as in another. Thus we
can still draw velocity profiles, which have meaning. Due to the eddying nature of the flow there is a
lot of movement of fluids between inner and outer layers of the regions. Thus the velocity near the
wall will be higher than in a laminar boundary layer where the movement and energy transfer do not
occur. The velocity gradient at the wall is consequently much higher so the skin friction and drag are
also higher.
Some measures of boundary layers are described in Figure 2 below.
0
( U - u) dy
u ( U - u) dy
x
0
area =
area =
y
0.99U
u
*
U

Figure 2: Boundary Layer thickness definitions

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The boundary layer thickness, o, is defined as the distance from the surface to the point where the
velocity is within 1 percent of the stream velocity.
uy=

The displacement thickness, o*, is the distance by which the solid boundary would have to be
displaced in a frictionless flow to give the same mass deficit as exists in the boundary layer.

The momentum thickness, u, is define as the thickness of a layer of fluid of velocity, U (free stream
velocity), for which the momentum flux is equal to the deficit of momentum flux through the
boundary layer.

The equation for velocity measured by pitot tube is given as

The Blasiuss exact solutions to the laminar boundary yield the following equations for the above
properties.

x
x
x
x
x
x
Re
664 . 0
Re
72 . 1
Re
0 . 5
=
=
=
-
u
o
o
4

Due to the complexity of the flow, there is no exact solution to the turbulent boundary layer. The
velocity profile within the boundary layer commonly approximated using the 1/7 power law.
7
1
|
.
|

\
|
=
o
y
U
u

The properties of boundary layer are approximated using the momentum integral equation, which
result in the following expression.

Another measure of the boundary layer is the shape factor, H, which is the ratio of the displacement
thickness to the momentum thickness, H = o*/u. For laminar flow, H increases from 2.6 to 3.5 at
separation. For turbulent boundary layer, H increases from 1.3 to approximately 2.5 at separation.

5
1
5
1
5
1
Re
036 . 0
Re
0463 . 0
Re
370 . 0
x
x
x
x
x
x
=
=
=
-
u
o
o
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5.0 EXPERIMENTAL APPARATUS
5.1. Airflow bench
The bench provides adjustable air stream enables a series of experiments to conduct when
used with matching experimental equipment. The airflow is controlled by a damper linked
to a control rod, which can be pulled in and out from the front panel of the bench.

5.2. Test apparatus
It consists of rectangular duct with a flat plate in the middle of the duct. One side of the
plate is smooth and other rough.

5.3. Total and static tube pressure probes and multi-tube manometer.
The velocity is measured using total and static probes which are connected to multi-tube
manometer.

6.0 EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES
In this experiment the behaviour of boundary layer on flat plate with different surfaces are
going to be observe. There are two surfaces being taken counted in this experiment which are
smooth and rough surfaces.
The boundary layer is to be observed at two different distances from the leading edge which
are 50 mm and 200 mm. Therefore transformation of the boundary layer from laminar to
turbulent can be studied.
The boundary layer thickness supposed to be calculated by using theory before conducting the
experiment. With the value, estimation can be made to decide the increment to be used in the
experiment.
As the increment begins to approaches the estimation value from theoretical calculation, the
pressure falls should be observed.
The pressure reading will not fall to zero as the Pitot tube has a finite thickness. A further
indication that the wall has been reach is that the pressure reading will be zero.
There should be a different in behaviour between boundary layer adjusted at 50 mm from
trailing edge and adjusted at 200 mm with its different types of surfaces

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7.0 RESULT AND ANALYSIS
Test 1 (Smooth Plate)
Distance from leading edge, x = 50 mm
Micrometer
(mm)
Static
pressure
(mBar)
Pitot tube
pressure
manometer
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height, h,
(mm)
u
(m/s)
u/U u/U (1- u/U)
0 5.3 7.4 2.1 26.88 18.69 0.8101 0.1538
0.25 5.3 7.8 2.5 32.00 20.39 0.8839 0.1026
0.50 5.3 8.0 2.7 34.56 21.19 0.9186 0.0748
0.75 5.3 8.1 2.8 35.84 21.58 0.9354 0.0604
1.00 5.3 8.2 2.9 37.12 21.96 0.9520 0.0457
1.25 5.3 8.3 3.0 38.40 22.34 0.9682 0.0307
1.50 5.3 8.4 3.1 39.68 22.70 0.9843 0.0155
1.75 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.00 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.25 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.50 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
Free stream velocity, U = 23.07 m/s
Reynold number, Re = 73,864

Test 2 (Smooth Plate)
Distance from leading edge, x = 200 mm
Micrometer
(mm)
Static
pressure
(mBar)
Pitot tube
pressure
manometer
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height, h,
(mm)
u
(m/s)
u/U u/U (1- u/U)
0 5.3 7.2 1.9 24.32 17.78 0.7706 0.1768
0.25 5.3 7.7 2.4 30.72 19.98 0.8660 0.1160
0.50 5.3 7.8 2.5 32.00 20.39 0.8839 0.1026
0.75 5.3 8.0 2.7 34.56 21.19 0.9186 0.0748
1.00 5.3 8.1 2.8 35.84 21.58 0.9354 0.0604
1.25 5.3 8.2 2.9 37.12 21.96 0.9520 0.0457
1.50 5.3 8.3 3.0 38.40 22.34 0.9682 0.0307
1.75 5.3 8.4 3.1 39.68 22.70 0.9843 0.0155
2.00 5.3 8.4 3.1 39.68 22.70 0.9843 0.0155
2.25 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.50 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.75 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
3.00 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
Free stream velocity, U = 23.07 m/s
Reynold number, Re = 295,456

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Test 3 (Rough Plate)
Distance from leading edge, x = 50 mm
Micrometer
(mm)
Static
pressure
(mBar)
Pitot tube
pressure
manometer
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height, h,
(mm)
u
(m/s)
u/U u/U (1- u/U)
0 5.3 7.2 1.9 24.32 17.78 0.7706 0.1768
0.25 5.3 7.5 2.2 28.16 19.13 0.8292 0.1417
0.50 5.3 7.7 2.4 30.72 19.98 0.8660 0.1160
0.75 5.3 8.0 2.7 34.56 21.19 0.9186 0.0748
1.00 5.3 8.1 2.8 35.84 21.58 0.9354 0.0604
1.25 5.3 8.2 2.9 37.12 21.96 0.9520 0.0457
1.50 5.3 8.3 3.0 38.40 22.34 0.9682 0.0307
1.75 5.3 8.4 3.1 39.68 22.70 0.9843 0.0155
2.00 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.25 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.50 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
Free stream velocity, U = 23.07 m/s
Reynold number, Re =73,864

Test 4 (Rough Plate)
Distance from leading edge, x = 200 mm
Micrometer
(mm)
Static
pressure
(mBar)
Pitot tube
pressure
manometer
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height
(mBar)
Differential
manometer
height, h,
(mm)
u
(m/s)
u/U u/U (1- u/U)
0 5.3 7.0 1.7 21.76 16.81 0.7289 0.1976
0.25 5.3 7.4 2.1 26.88 18.69 0.8101 0.1538
0.50 5.3 7.6 2.3 29.44 19.56 0.8478 0.1290
0.75 5.3 7.8 2.5 32.00 20.39 0.8839 0.1026
1.00 5.3 7.9 2.6 33.28 20.79 0.9014 0.0889
1.25 5.3 8.1 2.8 35.84 21.58 0.9354 0.0604
1.50 5.3 8.2 2.9 37.12 21.96 0.9520 0.0457
1.75 5.3 8.3 3.0 38.40 22.34 0.9682 0.0307
2.00 5.3 8.4 3.1 39.68 22.70 0.9843 0.0155
2.25 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.50 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
2.75 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
3.00 5.3 8.5 3.2 40.96 23.07 1 0
Free stream velocity, U = 23.07 m/s
Reynold number, Re =295,456

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Graph y vs. u/U for comparison the smooth and rough surfaces with distance from leading edge is
50 mm

Graph y vs. u/U for comparison the smooth and rough surfaces with distance from leading edge is
200 mm

0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 3 3.5
u/U
y
Graph y vs. u/U
Smooth 50 mm
Rough 50 mm
0
0.2
0.4
0.6
0.8
1
1.2
0 1 2 3 4
u/U
y
Graph y vs. u/U
Smooth 200 mm
Rough 200 mm
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Graph y vs. u/U ( 1- u/U ) for comparison the smooth and rough surfaces with distance from leading
edge is 50 mm

Graph y vs. u/U ( 1- u/U ) for comparison the smooth and rough surfaces with distance from leading
edge is 200 mm

0.00
0.02
0.04
0.06
0.08
0.10
0.12
0.14
0.16
0.18
0.20
0 1 2 3 4
u/U ( 1- u/U )
y
Graph y vs. u/U ( 1- u/U )
Smooth 50 mm
Rough 50 mm
0.00
0.02
0.04
0.06
0.08
0.10
0.12
0.14
0.16
0.18
0.20
0.22
0 1 2 3 4
u/U ( 1- u/U )
y
Graph y vs. u/U ( 1- u/U )
Smooth 200 mm
Rough 200 mm
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8.0 SAMPLE CALCULATIONS

)

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9.0 DISCUSSIONS

From the graph that we plotted, we see that its exactly a same between smooth and rough
surface flat plate due to the errors occurs during experiments but from the theory, those
smooth and rough surface flat plate graph at same distance from edge x, are suppose to be
different.

There are two types of flow in fluid that been showed in this experiment, laminar and turbulent
flow. The differences between laminar and turbulence flow of fluid on the flat surface can be
seen on the graph that have been plotted. Greater value of was obtained when the plane is
rough while the value becomes lesser when the distance from the edge of the plate is further.
Other than that, the roughness of the surfaces were effected the values of the pressures. The
appearing of laminar and turbulent are depending on the smooth or rough of the flat plate, if
the surface is smooth, the transition of laminar to be turbulent will delay, while when the
surface is rough, the transition of laminar to become turbulent will be quick as there are small
disturbance in the velocity profiles that make the flow easily pass through it. The differences of
the velocity profiles showed on the graph plotted and the free stream velocity calculated was
based on the smoothness and roughness of the surface.

There are a few errors occurred in this experiment, such as parallax error during taking data
from the experiment. Other than that, the error occurred when we calculated the U at 50mm
and 200mm. Then at the same time we also measure the pitot tube in the same level.
Unfortunately, our instrument is not capable on measuring the U at 50mm, is because the tube
that measure at 50mm does not fit at the hole. So all the calculation involve U will be taken at
200mm only.

Figure 3(a) Figure 3(b)

Figure 3: (a) boundary layer growth on a smooth surface; (b) boundary layer growth on a rough
surface

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10.0 CONCLUSIONS
The boundary layer velocities for the flat plate with smooth and rough surface have been
obtained where the data can be seen from the table. The velocity profiles of the flat plate have
been obtained through data read and the graphs have been plotted. The roughness of the flat
plate gives the variety of the velocity profile. It can be concluded that the surface roughness of
the flat plate influence the velocity profiles where the smooth surface will delay the transition
while the rough surface will make the transition become faster.

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11.0 REFERENCES
11.1. Cengel Y.A., Cimbala J.M., Fluid Mechanic Fundamentals and Applications: Second Edition
In SI Unit. McGraw Hill, New York, USA,2010
11.2. John F. Douglas, Janusz M. Gasiorek, John A. Swaffield, Fluid Mechanics, 4
th
Edition,
Pearson Prentice Hall, Scotland, 2001
11.3. Bruce R. Munson, Donald F. Young, Theodore H. Okiishi, Fundementals of Fluid
Mechanics, 5
th
Edition, John Wiley & Sons, Asia,2006