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Optimal velocity and density profiles for the onset of absolute instability in jets

Abstract : The absolute/convective character of the linear instability of axisymmetric jets is investigated for a wide range of parallel velocity and density profiles. An adjoint-based sensitivity analysis is carried out in order to maximize the absolute growth rate of jet profiles with and without density variations. It is demonstrated that jets without counterflow may display absolute instability at density ratios well above the previously assumed threshold rho(jet)/rho(infinity) = 0.72, and even in homogeneous settings. Absolute instability is promoted by a strong velocity gradient in the low-velocity region of the shear layer, as well as by a step-like density variation near the location of maximum shear. A new efficient algorithm for the computation of the absolute instability mode is presented.
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Lutz Lesshafft, Olivier Marquet. Optimal velocity and density profiles for the onset of absolute instability in jets. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2010, 662 (November), pp.398-408. ⟨10.1017/s0022112010004246⟩. ⟨hal-01020674⟩



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