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Preferential orientation of spheroidal particles in wavy flow

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 October 2018

Michelle H. DiBenedetto
The Bob and Norma Street Environmental Fluid Mechanics Laboratory, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Nicholas T. Ouellette*
The Bob and Norma Street Environmental Fluid Mechanics Laboratory, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Email address for correspondence:


We report a theoretical study of the angular dynamics of small, non-inertial spheroidal particles in a linear wave field. We recover the observation recently reported by DiBenedetto et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 837, 2018, pp. 320–340) that the orientation of these spheroids tends to a stable limit cycle consisting of a preferred value with a superimposed oscillation. We show that this behaviour is a consequence of finite wave amplitude and is the angular analogue of Stokes drift. We derive expressions for both the preferred orientation of the particles, which depends only on particle shape, and the amplitude of the oscillation about this preferred value, which additionally depends on the wave parameters and the depth of the particle in the water column.

JFM Papers
© 2018 Cambridge University Press 

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