Machine Learning and Field Inversion approaches to Data-Driven Turbulence Modeling

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Virginia Tech

There still is a practical need for improved closure models for the Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations. This dissertation explores two different approaches for using experimental data to provide improved closure for the Reynolds stress tensor field. The first approach uses machine learning to learn a general closure model from data. A novel framework is developed to train deep neural networks using experimental velocity and pressure measurements. The sensitivity of the RANS equations to the Reynolds stress, required for gradient-based training, is obtained by means of both variational and ensemble methods. The second approach is to infer the Reynolds stress field for a flow of interest from limited velocity or pressure measurements of the same flow. Here, this field inversion is done using a Monte Carlo Bayesian procedure and the focus is on improving the inference by enforcing known physical constraints on the inferred Reynolds stress field. To this end, a method for enforcing boundary conditions on the inferred field is presented. The two data-driven approaches explored and improved upon here demonstrate the potential for improved practical RANS predictions.

Turbulence modeling, Deep learning, Bayesian inference, Variational methods, Ensemble methods