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Nusselt Number Measurements for Turbulent Rayleigh-Benard Convection Alexei Nikolaenko and Guenter Ahlers

Summary: Nusselt Number Measurements for Turbulent Rayleigh-BeŽnard Convection
Alexei Nikolaenko and Guenter Ahlers
Department of Physics and iQUEST, University of California, Santa Barbara, California 93106, USA
(Received 15 May 2003; published 19 August 2003)
We present high-precision measurements of the Nusselt number N as a function of the Rayleigh
number R for a cylindrical sample of water (Prandtl number 4:4) of height L ' 50 cm and aspect
ratio ÿ D=L ' 1 (D is the diameter) for 3 109 R 6 1010. For R ' 3 109 the data are
consistent with existing results for acetone ( 4:0, R 3 109
). There the measurements are also
consistent with a model by Grossmann and Lohse (GL). As R increases, the measurements fall below
the GL prediction. Near R 6 1010 the prediction is 8% above the data.
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.91.084501 PACS numbers: 47.27.­i, 44.25.+f, 47.27.Te
Rayleigh-BeŽnard convection [1­3] (RBC) in a fluid
heated from below is an important process in many
respects. It occurs naturally in the Earth's atmosphere
and oceans and thus has short-term as well as long-term
impact on climate and weather. It takes place in the
Earth's mantle and drives the motion of continental plates.
It is the important heat transport mechanism in the outer
layer of the Sun [4]. It plays a significant role in many


Source: Ahlers, Guenter - Department of Physics, University of California at Santa Barbara


Collections: Physics