The non-Boussinesq lock-exchange problem : Part 1. Theory and experiments

Ryan Lowe, J.W. Rottman, P.F. Linden

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    105 Citations (Scopus)


    The results of an experimental study of the non-Boussinesq lock-exchange problem are described. The experiments were performed in a rectangular channel using water and either a sodium iodide solution or a sodium chloride solution as the two fluids. These combinations of fluids have density ratios (light over heavy density) in the range 0.61 to 1. A two-layer hydraulic theory is developed to model the experiments. The theory assumes that a light gravity current propagates in one direction along the top of the channel and a heavy gravity current propagates in the opposite direction along the bottom of the channel. The two currents are assumed to be connected by either a combination of an internal bore and an expansion wave, or just an expansion wave. The present results, previous experimental results and two-dimensional numerical simulations from a companion paper are compared with the theory. The results of the comparison lead to the conclusion that the theory without the internal bore is the most appropriate.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)101-124
    JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
    Publication statusPublished - 2005


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