Environmental fluid mechanics
The Environmental Fluid Mechanics Laboratory has been developed to investigate complex turbulent mixing and exchange problems with a particular focus on stable/unstable density stratified environmental flows. The laboratory is fully equipped with PIV/LIF laser diagnostic tools, LDA and high sensitivity cameras. The laboratory has a number of large flumes developed to simulate at a laboratory scale, river flow, stably/unstably stratified boundary layers and negatively buoyant jets. These themes are ongoing interests for the group.
- Entrainment across a two-layer density interface
Many inland Australian rivers are affected by rising saline ground water, which forms hyper-saline pools in the bottom of deep scour holes on river bends in periods of low flow. This leads to a two-layer stably stratified shear flow with fresh water flowing over the top of more dense saline water. The overarching goal of this work is to develop analytical tools that will enable catchment managers to predict flow response to an environmental release. These require understanding of what the turbulent entrainment mechanisms are and how they are related to flow stability.
- Thermal stratification, overturning and mixing in riverine environments
- Negatively Buoyant Jets
Volcanic eruptions, building ventilation and brine discharge from desalination plants are all examples of the occurrence of turbulent fountains and negatively buoyant jets. Management and design of these processes requires the ability to accurately predict these flows and, in particular, entrainment and mixing with the ambient fluid. We examine the turbulent structure of fountains and negatively buoyant jets using numerical simulation and laboratory experiments.