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Axial mixing and vortex stability to in situ radial injection in Taylor–Couette laminar and turbulent flows

  • Nikolas A. Wilkinson (a1) and Cari S. Dutcher (a2)


Taylor–Couette flows have been widely studied in part due to the enhanced mixing performance from the variety of hydrodynamic flow states accessible. These process improvements have been demonstrated despite the traditionally limited injection mechanisms from the complexity of the Taylor–Couette geometry. In this study, using a newly designed, modified Taylor–Couette cell, axial mass transport behaviour is experimentally determined over two orders of magnitude of Reynolds number. Four different flow states, including laminar and turbulent Taylor vortex flows and laminar and turbulent wavy vortex flows, were studied. Using flow visualization techniques, the measured dispersion coefficient was found to increase with increasing $Re$ , and a single, unified regression is found for all vortices studied. In addition to mass transport, the vortex structures’ stability to radial injection is also quantified. A dimensionless stability criterion, the ratio of injection to diffusion time scales, was found to capture the conditions under which vortex structures are stable to injection. Using the stability criterion, global and transitional stability regions are identified as a function of Reynolds number, $Re$ .


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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
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