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Collapse and winding of an asymmetric annulus of vorticity

  • A. J. Peurrung (a1), J. Notte (a1) and J. Fajans (a1)

The dynamics of an asymmetric annulus of vorticity in an incompressible, inviscid twodimensional fluid are experimentally studied using a pure electron plasma. A strict fluid analogy requires that the plasma system behave like an ideal fluid in a frictionless cylindrical container. For certain parameters the asymmetric annulus undergoes a complex evolution which is quite different from that of a symmetric annulus. During the first ‘active’, phase the symmetries grow until the annulus collapses, leaving a large vortex at the device centre. In the second, ‘passive’, phase the remainder of the annulus winds around this central vortex into an ever tighter spiral. Finally, slow shear instabilities destroy the structure of the highly evolved spiral.

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Journal of Fluid Mechanics
  • ISSN: 0022-1120
  • EISSN: 1469-7645
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