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Instability of a tangential discontinuity surface in a three-dimensional compressible medium

  • Compressible flows appear in many natural and technological processes, for instance, the flow of natural gases in a pipe system. Thus, a detailed study of the stability of tangential velocity discontinuity in compressible media is relevant and necessary. The first early investigation in two-dimensional (2D) media was given more than 70 years ago. In this article, we continue investigating the stability in three-dimensional (3D) media. The idealized statement of this problem in an infinite spatial space was studied by Syrovatskii in 1954. However, the omission of the absolute sign of cos θ with θ being the angle between vectors of velocity and wave number in a certain inequality produced the inaccurate conclusion that the flow is always unstable for entire values of the Mach number M. First, we revisit this case to arrive at the correct conclusion, namely that the discontinuity surface is stabilized for a large Mach number with a given value of the angle θ. Next, we introduce a real finite spatial system such that it is bounded by solid walls along the flow direction. We show that the discontinuity surface is stable if and only if the dispersion relation equation has only real roots, with a large value of the Mach number; otherwise, the surface is always unstable. In particular, we show that a smaller critical value of the Mach number is required to make the flow in a narrow channel stable.
Author:Thi Thai LeORCiD, Thorsten KochORCiD
Document Type:Article
Parent Title (English):Physics of Fluids
First Page:016106
Year of first publication:2021
Published in:Physics of Fluids
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