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Radial intrusions from turbulent plumes in uniform stratification
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/content/aip/journal/pof2/26/3/10.1063/1.4869119
2014-03-27
2014-12-22

Abstract

Laboratory experiments investigate the radial spread of an intrusion created by a turbulent forced plume in uniformly stratified ambient fluid. The flow evolution is determined as it depends upon the ambient buoyancy frequency, , and the source momentum and buoyancy fluxes, and , respectively. The plume reaches its maximum vertical extent, , collapses back upon itself as a fountain and then spreads radially outwards at its neutral buoyancy depth, , where the intrusion has the same density as the ambient. Through theory and experiments we determine that = (σ) , in which = 3/4 −1/2, σ = ( / )2, and (σ) ∝ σ−3/8 for σ ≲ 50 and (σ) ∝ σ−1/4 for σ ≳ 50. In the inertia-buoyancy regime the intrusion front advances in time approximately as 3/4, consistent with models assuming a constant buoyancy flux into the intrusion. Where the intrusion first forms, at radius , its thickness is approximately constant in time. The thickness of the intrusion as a whole, (, ), adopts a self-similar shape of the form / ≃ [( )/( )] , with ≃ 0.55 ± 0.03. The comparison of these results to large volcanic plumes penetrating into and spreading in the stratosphere is discussed.

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Scitation: Radial intrusions from turbulent plumes in uniform stratification
http://aip.metastore.ingenta.com/content/aip/journal/pof2/26/3/10.1063/1.4869119
10.1063/1.4869119
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