Phase Diffusion in a Ramped Convection Channel
The drift of transverse convection rolls in a channel heated from below has been studied experimentally. Owing to the gradual decrease of the height at the ends of the channel, the Rayleigh number exhibits a ramplike decay toward subcritical values. Such a configuration selects a small wavenumber band. But the wavenumber bands selected by the two ramps may cease to overlap at supercritical Rayleigh numbers. The resulting wavenumber gradient causes phase diffusion, i.e. the convection pattern drifts from the high wavenumber end to the low wavenumber end. Various observational data on this phenomenon are presented.
KeywordsRayleigh Number Drift Velocity Phase Diffusion Convection Pattern Convection Roll
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