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Structure of a stratified tilted vortex

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 July 2007

NICOLAS BOULANGER
Affiliation:
Institut de Recherche sur les Phénomènes Hors Équilibre, CNRS/Universités Aix-Marseille I&II, 49, rue F. Joliot-Curie, B.P. 146, F-13384 Marseille cedex 13, France
PATRICE MEUNIER
Affiliation:
Institut de Recherche sur les Phénomènes Hors Équilibre, CNRS/Universités Aix-Marseille I&II, 49, rue F. Joliot-Curie, B.P. 146, F-13384 Marseille cedex 13, France
STÉPHANE LE DIZÈS
Affiliation:
Institut de Recherche sur les Phénomènes Hors Équilibre, CNRS/Universités Aix-Marseille I&II, 49, rue F. Joliot-Curie, B.P. 146, F-13384 Marseille cedex 13, France

Abstract

The structure of a columnar vortex in a stably stratified fluid is studied experimentally and theoretically when the vortex axis is slightly tilted with respect to the direction of stratification. When the Froude number of the vortex is larger than 1, we show that tilting induces strong density variations and an intense axial flow in a rim around the vortex. We demonstrate that these characteristics can be associated with a critical-point singularity of the correction of azimuthal wavenumber m = 1 generated by tilting where the angular velocity of the vortex equals the Brunt–Väisälä frequency of the stratified fluid. The theoretical structure obtained by smoothing this singularity using viscous effects (in a viscous critical-layer analysis) is compared to particle image velocimetry measurements of the axial velocity field and visualizations of the density field and a good agreement is demonstrated.

Type
Papers
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2007

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