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Published June 2014 | Published
Journal Article Open

Turbulent mixing driven by spherical implosions. Part 1. Flow description and mixing-layer growth


We present large-eddy simulations (LES) of turbulent mixing at a perturbed, spherical interface separating two fluids of differing densities and subsequently impacted by a spherically imploding shock wave. This paper focuses on the differences between two fundamental configurations, keeping fixed the initial shock Mach number ≈1.2, the density ratio (precisely |A_0|≈0.67) and the perturbation shape (dominant spherical wavenumber ℓ_0=40 and amplitude-to-initial radius of 3%): the incident shock travels from the lighter fluid to the heavy fluid or, inversely, from the heavy to the light fluid. After describing the computational problem we present results on the radially symmetric flow, the mean flow, and the growth of the mixing layer. Turbulent statistics are developed in Part 2 (Lombardini, M., Pullin, D. I. & Meiron, D. I. J. Fluid Mech., vol. 748, 2014, pp. 113–142). A wave-diagram analysis of the radially symmetric flow highlights that the light–heavy mixing layer is processed by consecutive reshocks, and not by reverberating rarefaction waves as is usually observed in planar geometry. Less surprisingly, reshocks process the heavy–light mixing layer as in the planar case. In both configurations, the incident imploding shock and the reshocks induce Richtmyer–Meshkov (RM) instabilities at the density layer. However, we observe differences in the mixing-layer growth because the RM instability occurrences, Rayleigh–Taylor (RT) unstable scenarios (due to the radially accelerated motion of the layer) and phase inversion events are different. A small-amplitude stability analysis along the lines of Bell (Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory Report, LA-1321, 1951) and Plesset (J. Appl. Phys., vol. 25, 1954, pp. 96–98) helps quantify the effects of the mean flow on the mixing-layer growth by decoupling the effects of RT/RM instabilities from Bell–Plesset effects associated with geometric convergence and compressibility for arbitrary convergence ratios. The analysis indicates that baroclinic instabilities are the dominant effect, considering the low convergence ratio (≈2) and rather high (ℓ>10) mode numbers considered.

Additional Information

© 2014 Cambridge University Press. Received 12 June 2013; revised 29 January 2014; accepted 20 March 2014; first published online 28 April 2014. This work has been supported in part by the Department of Energy under subcontract no. DE-AC52-06NA25396.

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