Experimental Rayleigh-Taylor instability in a circular tube.

J. W. Jacobs, A. Bunster, I. Catton, M. S. Plesset

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The Rayleigh-Taylor instability of an air/water system was investigated experimentally. The instability was produced by accelerating a slug of water down a vertical circular tube of 6.25 in. inside diameter employing a pressure differential. Accelerations from 3 to 25 times gravitational acceleration with fluid depths from 5 to 20 centimetres were studied. The disturbances first observed were purely axisymmetric with wave numbers corresponding closely to the fastest growing values given by linear theory. Later stages of planform development were characterized by a series of transitions which cannot be predicted by linear theory. These transitions were correlated with disturbance height. (A)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)460-466
Number of pages7
Issue number4 , Dec. 1985
StatePublished - Jan 1 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering


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