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Mixing efficiency in controlled exchange flows



Turbulence and mixing are generated by the shear between two counter-flowing layers in hydraulically controlled buoyancy-driven exchange flows through a constriction. From direct measurements of the density distribution and the amount of turbulent mixing in steady laboratory exchange flows we determine the overall efficiency of the mixing. For sufficiently large Reynolds numbers the mixing efficiency is 0.11(±0.01), independent of the aspect ratio and other details of constriction geometry, in good agreement with a scaling analysis. We conclude that the mixing in shear flows of this type has an overall efficiency significantly less than the maximum value widely proposed for stratified turbulence.



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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
  • ISSN: 0022-1120
  • EISSN: 1469-7645
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-fluid-mechanics
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