Wind tunnel experimental investigation of sand velocity in aeolian sand transport
Review articleOpen access

AbstractSand velocity in aeolian sand transport was measured using the laser Doppler technique of PDPA (Phase Doppler Particle Analyzer) in a wind tunnel. The sand velocity profile, probability distribution of particle velocity, particle velocity fluctuation and particle turbulence were analyzed in detail. The experimental results verified that the sand horizontal velocity profile can be expressed by a logarithmic function above 0.01 m, while a deviation occurs below 0.01 m. The mean vertical velocity of grains generally ranges from − 0.2 m/s to 0.2 m/s, and is downward at the lower height, upward at the higher height. The probability distributions of the horizontal velocity of ascending and descending particles have a typical peak and are right-skewed at a height of 4 mm in the lower part of saltation layer. The vertical profile of the horizontal RMS velocity fluctuation of particles shows a single peak. The horizontal RMS velocity fluctuation of sand particles is generally larger than the vertical RMS velocity fluctuation. The RMS velocity fluctuations of grains in both horizontal and vertical directions increase with wind velocity. The particle turbulence intensity decreases with height. The present investigation is helpful in understanding the sand movement mechanism in windblown sand transport and also provides a reference for the study of blowing sand velocity.

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