Mixing in a density-driven current flowing down a slope in a rotating fluid
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We discuss laboratory experiments investigating mixing in a density-driven current flowing down a sloping bottom, in a rotating homogenous fluid. A systematic study spanning a wide range of Froude, 0.8 < Fr < 10, and Reynolds, 10 < Re < 1400, numbers was conducted by varying three parameters: the bottom slope; the flow rate; and the density of the dense fluid. Different flow regimes were observed, i.e. waves (non-breaking and breaking) and turbulent regimes, while changing the above parameters. Mixing in the density-driven current has been quantified within the observed regimes, and at different locations on the slope. The dependence of mixing on the relevant non-dimensional numbers, i.e. slope, Fr and Re, is discussed. The entrainment parameter, E, was found to be dependent not only on Fr, as assumed in previous studies, but also on Re. In particular, mixing increased with increasing Fr and Re. For low Fr and Re, the magnitude of the mixing was comparable to mixing in the ocean. For large Fr and Re, mixing was comparable to that observed in previous laboratory experiments that exhibited the classic turbulent entrainment behaviour.
Author Posting. © Cambridge University Press, 2008. This article is posted here by permission of Cambridge University Press for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Fluid Mechanics 604 (2008): 369-388, doi:10.1017/S0022112008001237.
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