Fluid Mechanics Research Lab

Our research is mostly computational and theoretical and is primarily in the area of incompressible fluid mechanics, including stability of shear and buoyancy-driven flows, development of computational methods, and free-surface phenomena. Current projects include computations of the unsteady deformation and dissolution of water-soluble liquid carbon dioxide drops rising in water at intermediate and transitional Reynolds numbers; vortex shedding, vortex-induced vibration, and the development of temporal chaos and three-dimensionality in the wakes of circular and noncircular cylinders, with applications to suppressing vibration and power generation; the development of low-order (ordinary differential equation) models of complex flows; and the fluid mechanics of bacterial inactivation in fresh-cut vegetable processing. To facilitate the application of particle image velocimetry and other modern optical diagnostics to liquid-liquid flows (where that is currently not possible, due to either opacity or refractive index mismatch), we are (experimentally) developing pairs of ternary (three-component) immiscible transparent liquids for which the compositions can be adjusted so as to match the index of refraction over wide ranges of the liquid-liquid density ratio and viscosity ratio.


  • Arne J. Pearlstein