Particle-laden two-dimensional elastic turbulence
The aggregation properties of heavy inertial particles in the elastic turbulence regime of an Oldroyd-B fluid with periodic Kolmogorov mean flow are investigated by means of extensive numerical simulations in two dimensions. Both the small- and large-scale features of the resulting inhomogeneous particle distribution are examined, focusing on their connection with the properties of the advecting viscoelastic flow. We find that particles preferentially accumulate on thin highly elastic propagating structures and that this effect is the largest for intermediate values of particle inertia. We provide a quantitative characterization of this phenomenon that allows to relate it to the accumulation of particles in filamentary highly strained flow regions producing clusters of correlation dimension close to 1. At larger scales, particles are found to undergo turbophoretic-like segregation. Indeed, our results indicate a close relationship between the profiles of particle density and fluid velocity fluctuations. The large-scale inhomogeneity of the particle distribution is interpreted in the framework of a model derived in the limit of small, but finite, particle inertia. The qualitative characteristics of different observables are, to a good extent, independent of the flow elasticity. When increased, the latter is found, however, to slightly reduce the globally averaged degree of turbophoretic unmixing.
KeywordsTopical issue: Flowing Matter, Problems and Applications
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