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Linear stability of double-diffusive two-fluid channel flow

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 October 2011

Kirti Chandra Sahu*
Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, Yeddumailaram 502 205, India
Rama Govindarajan
Engineering Mechanics Unit, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur, Bangalore 560 064, India
Email address for correspondence:


Double-diffusive density stratified systems are well studied and have been shown to display a rich variety of instability behaviour. However double-diffusive systems where the inhomogeneities in solute concentration are manifested in terms of stratified viscosity rather than density have been studied far less and, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, not in high-Reynolds-number shear flows. In a simple geometry, namely the two-fluid channel flow of such a system, we find a new double-diffusive mode of instability. The instability becomes stronger as the ratio of diffusivities of the two scalars increases, even in a situation where the net Schmidt number decreases. The double-diffusive mode is destabilized when the layer of viscosity stratification overlaps with the critical layer of the perturbation.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2011

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