The structure of sidewall boundary layers in conned rotating Rayleigh-Bénard convection

R.P.J. Kunnen, H.J.H. Clercx, G.J.F. van Heijst

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    Turbulent rotating convection is usually studied in a cylindrical geometry, as this is its most convenient experimental realization. In our previous work (Kunnen et al., J. Fluid Mech., vol. 688, 2011, pp. 422–442) we studied turbulent rotating convection in a cylinder with the emphasis on the boundary layers. A secondary circulation with a convoluted spatial structure has been observed in mean velocity plots. Here we present a linear boundary-layer analysis of this flow, which leads to a model of the circulation. The model consists of two independent parts: an internal recirculation within the sidewall boundary layer, and a bulk-driven domainfilling circulation. Both contributions exhibit the typical structure of the Stewartson boundary layer near the sidewall: a sandwich structure of two boundary layers of typical thicknesses E1=4 and E1=3, where E is the Ekman number. Although the structure of the bulk-driven circulation may change considerably depending on the Ekman number, the boundary-layer recirculation is present at all Ekman numbers in the range $0.72\times 10^{-5} \leq E \leq 5.76 \times 10^{-5}$ considered here.
    Original languageUndefined
    Pages (from-to)509-532
    Number of pages24
    JournalJournal of fluid mechanics
    Issue numberJuly
    Publication statusPublished - 2013


    • EWI-23961
    • Benard convection
    • IR-87855
    • Rotating flows
    • METIS-300154
    • Boundary layer structure

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