Energy transfer by inertial waves during the buildup of turbulence in a rotating system

Itamar Kolvin*, Kobi Cohen, Yuval Vardi, Eran Sharon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

We study the transition from fluid at rest to turbulence in a rotating tank. The energy is transported by inertial wave packets through the fluid volume. These high amplitude waves propagate at velocities consistent with those calculated from linearized theory. A "front" in the temporal evolution of the energy power spectrum indicates a time scale for energy transport at the linear wave speed. Nonlinear energy transfer between modes is governed by a different, longer, time scale. The observed mechanisms can lead to significant differences between rotating and two-dimensional turbulent flows.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number014503
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume102
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 5 Jan 2009

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