Syllabus & Schedule - Fall 2015


Benoit Cushman-Roisin
327 Murdough
Telephone: 1-603-646-9075

Teaching Assistant


Course description

An introduction to the statistical theory of turbulence for students interested in research in turbulence or geophysical fluid dynamics. Topics to be covered include the statistical properties of turbulence; kinematics of homogeneous turbulence, phenomenological theories of turbulence; waves, instabilities, chaos and the transition to turbulence; analytic theories and the closure problem; diffusion of passive scalars; and convective transport.

Prerequisites: ENGS 150 (Intermediate Fluid Mechanics) or equivalent or permission of the instructor.

Web address


Turbulent Flows
by Stephen B. Pope
1st and only edition
Cambridge University Press © 2000

Course Objectives

Course Format

Lecture preparation and delivery

Each student will be asked to prepare and deliver one lecture in the second half of the term. The topic is at the student's choosing as long as it falls within the scope of turbulence. Once the topic is selected, the student will meet with the instructor to decide on the materials to be presented and to receive a reading list for preparation.

The lecture may report and discuss results of a multi-paper theoretical investigation, of published laboratory experiments, of outdoor investigations, or of computational simulations. Ideally, the lecture should be on a topic related to the student's current research. Examples of possible lectures are:

A 50-minute lecture will be prepared and delivered, followed by a Q&A period. The grade will be based on the student's understanding of the materials, the organization of the lecture, the quality of the slides and delivery, and the student's ability to answer questions.


Academic Honor Code

As always, students are expected to observe all aspects of the Academic Honor Principle. In this course, collaboration is allowed during homework preparation, although students have to turn in their individual answers. No collaboration whatsoever is allowed during the mid-term and final examinations. During those assignments, questions can only be directed to the instructor or the TAs.

Dartmouth College policy requires that any apparent violation of the Honor Code be reported to the Committee on Standards. The professor does not have another choice, regardless of how he/she may feel.

Note on laptop use in class

Use of laptop computers is forbidden during class. The only granted exception is to students with documented writing disabilities who need a computer for note taking.

Note to students with disabilities

Students with any type of disability are encouraged to contact the instructor to discuss their needs and what accommodations are necessary. Such contact should be made at the beginning of the term or, in the case of a new condition, as soon as it occurs.


Week of Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
14 Sept. - - - - -
21 Sept. - - - -
28 Sept. What is turbulence:
Types and scales
- Homogeneous turbulence
(Kolmogorov theory)
Reynolds decomposition
Turbulent stress
- -
5 Oct. Turbulent kinetic energy:
Sources and sinks
Turbulence closure
- Shear turbulence:
Log velocity profile
Turbulent pipe flow
- -
12 Oct. Turbulent jets
- Convective turbulence - -
19 Oct. Atmospheric boundary layer Mid-term exam assigned
(at 10am)
Numerical simulation techniques - Mid-term exam due
(at 5pm)
26 Oct. Large-eddy simulations - Compressible turbulence
- -
2 Nov. Two-dimensional turbulence - Student lecture - -
9 Nov. Student lecture - Student lecture - -
16 Nov. Student lecture - - - Final exam assigned
(at 10am)
23 Nov. - - Final exam due
(at 5pm)
- -