Rayleigh–Bénard Convection

  • Antonio BarlettaEmail author


The onset of convection cells in a horizontal fluid layer heated from below is a classical phenomenon of thermally induced flow. The generally accepted denomination of this phenomenon is Rayleigh–Bénard convection. Its cause is the buoyancy force, so that the classification of this type of flow and heat transfer is natural convection. The well-known dynamics of the Rayleigh–Bénard convection is one where the fluid maintains its state of rest until the temperature difference between the lower and the upper boundaries of the fluid layer exceeds a critical value. In dimensionless terms, the parameter governing the onset of the cellular flow by exceeding a critical value is the Rayleigh number. This chapter will describe the theoretical foundations of this phenomenon in its different variants, as well as its extension to the domain of seepage flows in porous media.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Industrial EngineeringAlma Mater Studiorum Università di BolognaBolognaItaly

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