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On geometry effects in Rayleigh-Benard convection

Abstract

Various recent experiments hint at a geometry dependence of scaling relations in Rayleigh-B\'enard convection. Aspect ratio and shape dependences have been found. In this paper a mechanism is offered which can account for such dependences. It is based on Prandtl's theory for laminar boundary layers and on the conservation of volume flux of the large scale wind. The mechanism implies the possibility of different thicknesses of the kinetic boundary layers at the sidewalls and the top/bottom plates, just as experimentally found by Qiu and Xia (Phys. Rev. E58, 486 (1998)), and also different RaRa-scaling of the wind measured over the plates and at the sidewalls. In the second part of the paper a scaling argument for the velocity and temperature fluctuations in the bulk is developeVarious recent experiments hint at a geometry dependence of scaling relations in Rayleigh-Benard convection. Aspect ratio and shape dependences have been found. In this paper a mechanism is offered which can account for such dependences. It is based on Prandtl's theory for laminar boundary layers and on the conservation of volume flux of the large scale wind. The mechanism implies the possibility of different thicknesses of the kinetic boundary layers at the sidewalls and the top/bottom plates, just as experimentally found by Qiu and Xia (Phys. Rev. E58, 486 (1998)), and also different RaRa-scaling of the wind measured over the plates and at the sidewalls. In the second part of the paper a scaling argument for the velocity and temperature fluctuations in the bulk is developeComment: 4 pages, 1 figur

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