High-precision Taylor-Couette experiment to study subcritical transitions and the role of boundary conditions and size effects Journal Article


Author(s): Avila, Kerstin; Hof, Björn
Article Title: High-precision Taylor-Couette experiment to study subcritical transitions and the role of boundary conditions and size effects
Affiliation IST Austria
Abstract: A novel Taylor-Couette system has been constructed for investigations of transitional as well as high Reynolds number turbulent flows in very large aspect ratios. The flexibility of the setup enables studies of a variety of problems regarding hydrodynamic instabilities and turbulence in rotating flows. The inner and outer cylinders and the top and bottom endplates can be rotated independently with rotation rates of up to 30 Hz, thereby covering five orders of magnitude in Reynolds numbers (Re = 101-106). The radius ratio can be easily changed, the highest realized one is η = 0.98 corresponding to an aspect ratio of 260 gap width in the vertical and 300 in the azimuthal direction. For η < 0.98 the aspect ratio can be dynamically changed during measurements and complete transparency in the radial direction over the full length of the cylinders is provided by the usage of a precision glass inner cylinder. The temperatures of both cylinders are controlled independently. Overall this apparatus combines an unmatched variety in geometry, rotation rates, and temperatures, which is provided by a sophisticated high-precision bearing system. Possible applications are accurate studies of the onset of turbulence and spatio-temporal intermittent flow patterns in very large domains, transport processes of turbulence at high Re, the stability of Keplerian flows for different boundary conditions, and studies of baroclinic instabilities.
Journal Title: Review of Scientific Instruments
Volume: 84
Issue 6
ISSN: 0034-6748
Publisher: American Institute of Physics  
Date Published: 2013-06-06
Start Page: Article number: 065106
DOI: 10.1063/1.4807704
Notes: We acknowledge K. Rühl (arkkon Gmbh, Germany) for his technical and engineering support and particularly his enthusiasm and ideas in finding various technical solutions. We appreciate discussions about motor fluctuations with D. van Gils and the coauthors of Ref. 11 and the sharing of their data. We want to mention the excellent technical service of Novotron (Germany), especially of R. Mühlberger and we thank M. Avila for computing the linear stability (black line in Fig. 13). The research is financially supported by the Max Planck Society and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (FOR 1182). K.A. acknowledges support from the International Max Planck Research School for the Physics of Biological and Complex Systems and the Göttinger Graduate School for Neurosciences, Biophysics and Molecular Biosciences.
Open access: no
IST Austria Authors
  1. Björn Hof
    46 Hof
Related IST Austria Work