The flow field over a low aspect ratio (AR) circular pillar (L/D = 1.5) in a microchannel was studied experimentally. Microparticle image velocimetry (μPIV) was employed to quantify flow parameters such as flow field, spanwise vorticity, and turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) in the microchannel. Flow regimes of cylinder-diameter-based Reynolds number at 100 ⩽ ReD ⩽ 700 (i.e., steady, transition from quasi-steady to unsteady, and unsteady flow) were elucidated at the microscale. In addition, active flow control (AFC), via a steady control jet (issued from the pillar itself in the downstream direction), was implemented to induce favorable disturbances to the flow in order to alter the flow field, promote turbulence, and increase mixing. Together with passive flow control (i.e., a circular pillar), turbulent kinetic energy was significantly increased in a controllable manner throughout the flow field.
International Journal of Heat and Fluid Flow, Volume 36, p. 118-132, August 2012.