The transverse field Richtmyer-Meshkov instability in magnetohydrodynamics

V. Wheatley, Ravi Samtaney, D. I. Pullin, R. M. Gehre

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The magnetohydrodynamic Richtmyer-Meshkov instability is investigated for the case where the initial magnetic field is unperturbed and aligned with the mean interface location. For this initial condition, the magnetic field lines penetrate the perturbed density interface, forbidding a tangential velocity jump and therefore the presence of a vortex sheet. Through simulation, we find that the vorticity distribution present on the interface immediately after the shock acceleration breaks up into waves traveling parallel and anti-parallel to the magnetic field, which transport the vorticity. The interference of these waves as they propagate causes the perturbation amplitude of the interface to oscillate in time. This interface behavior is accurately predicted over a broad range of parameters by an incompressible linearized model derived presently by solving the corresponding impulse driven, linearized initial value problem. Our use of an equilibrium initial condition results in interface motion produced solely by the impulsive acceleration. Nonlinear compressible simulations are used to investigate the behavior of the transverse field magnetohydrodynamic Richtmyer-Meshkov instability, and the performance of the incompressible model, over a range of shock strengths, magnetic field strengths, perturbation amplitudes and Atwood numbers.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)016102
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 15 2014

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KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01


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