A series of fluid physics microgravity experiments with an enough long run time were performed in the ‘‘KIBO,’’ the Japanese Experiment Module aboard the International Space Station, to examine the transition to chaos of the thermocapillary convection in a half zone liquid bridge of silicone oil with a Prandtl number of 112. The temperature difference between the coaxial disks induced the thermocapillary-driven flow, and we experimentally demonstrated that the flow fields underwent a tran- sition from steady flow to oscillatory flow, and finally to chaotic flow with increasing temperature differ- ence. We obtained the surface temperature time series at the middle of the liquid bridge to quantitatively evaluate the transition process of the flow fields. By Fourier analysis, we further confirmed that the flow fields changed from a periodic, to a quasi-periodic, and finally to a chaotic state. The increasing nonlin- earity with the development of the flow fields was confirmed by time-series chaos analysis. The deter- mined Lyapunov exponent and the translation error indicated that the flow fields made transition to the chaotic field with the increasing temperature difference.
Research Containing: Liquid bridge
We study the singular event which took place when conducting an experiment with a liquid bridge aboard the International Space Station. The liquid bridge vibrated unexpectedly for several tens of seconds with an oscillation amplitude larger than 15% of its radius. At first glance, the analysis of the mass force measured by the accelerometer during the oscillation did not show any significant perturbation. However, our study reveals the existence of two small-amplitude vibrations of the experimental setup with practically the resonance frequency of the first lateral mode. These vibrations occurred a few tens of seconds before the liquid bridge oscillation reached its maximum amplitude, produced a mass force with a magnitude of the order of 10−5g. The numerical integration of the non-linear Navier–Stokes equations reproduces remarkably well the free surface oscillations measured in the experiments. It allows us to reconstruct the three-dimensional liquid bridge motion which took place in the experiment. The present study illustrates the sensitivity of liquid bridges in a microgravity environment, where tiny perturbations may produce significant vibrations which survive over long periods of time.
Instability and associated roll structure of Marangoni convection in high Prandtl number liquid bridge with large aspect ratio
This paper reports the experimental results on the instability and associated roll structures (RSs) of Marangoni convection in liquid bridges formed under the microgravity environment on the International Space Station. The geometry of interest is high aspect ratio (AR = height/diameter ≥ 1.0) liquid bridges of high Prandtl number fluids (Pr = 67 and 207) suspended between coaxial disks heated differentially. The unsteady flow field and associated RSs were revealed with the three-dimensional particle tracking velocimetry. It is found that the flow field after the onset of instability exhibits oscillations with azimuthal mode number m = 1 and associated RSs traveling in the axial direction. The RSs travel in the same direction as the surface flow (co-flow direction) for 1.00 ≤ AR ≤ 1.25 while they travel in the opposite direction (counter-flow direction) for AR ≥ 1.50, thus showing the change of traveling directions with AR. This traveling direction for AR ≥ 1.50 is reversed to the co-flow direction when the temperature difference between the disks is increased to the condition far beyond the critical one. This change of traveling directions is accompanied by the increase of the oscillation frequency. The characteristics of the RSs for AR ≥ 1.50, such as the azimuthal mode of oscillation, the dimensionless oscillation frequency, and the traveling direction, are in reasonable agreement with those of the previous sounding rocket experiment for AR = 2.50 and those of the linear stability analysis of an infinite liquid bridge.
Space experiment on the instability of Marangoni convection in large liquid bridge – MEIS-4: effect of Prandtl number
Microgravity experiments on the thermocapillary convection in liquid bridge, called Marangoni Experiment in Space (MEIS), are carried out in "KIBO" of ISS. Three series of experiments, MEIS-1, 2, and 4, have been conducted so far. This paper reports the results obtained from MEIS-4, in which 20cSt silicone oil ( Pr = 207) is used to generate large liquid bridges. They are suspended between coaxial disks that are 50mm in diameter, with their maximum length equal to 62.5mm. MEIS-4 aims at (1) determining the critical temperature difference for the onset of oscillatory flow; (2) realizing high Marangoni number conditions for high Pr fluid; (3) clarifying the effects of volume ratio, heating rate, hysteresis, and cooled disk temperature; and (4) observing whether the hydrothermal wave with azimuthal mode number m = 0 appears or not. The main results are presented and compared with those obtained in MEIS-1 and 2, which utilized liquid bridges of 5cSt silicone oil ( Pr = 67).
Microgravity experiments have been conducted on the International Space Station in order to clarify the transition processes of the Marangoni convection in liquid bridges of high Prandtl number fluid. The use of microgravity allows us to generate large liquid bridges, 30 mm in diameter and up to 60 mm in length. Three-dimensional particle tracking velocimetry (3-D PTV) is used to reveal complex flow patterns that appear after the transition of the flow field to oscillatory states. It is found that a standing-wave oscillation having an azimuthal mode number equal to one appears in the long liquid bridges. For the liquid bridge 45 mm in length, the oscillation of the flow field is observed in a meridional plane of the liquid bridge, and the flow field exhibits the presence of multiple vortical structures traveling from the heated disk toward the cooled disk. Such flow behaviors are shown to be associated with the propagation of surface temperature fluctuations visualized with an IR camera. These results indicate that the oscillation of the flow and temperature field is due to the propagation of the hydrothermal waves. Their characteristics are discussed in comparison with some previous results with long liquid bridges. It is shown that the axial wavelength of the hydrothermal wave observed presently is comparable to the length of the liquid bridge and that this result disagrees with the previous linear stability analysis for an infinitely long liquid bridge.
Dynamic particle accumulation structure (PAS) in half-zone liquid bridge – Reconstruction of particle motion by 3-D PTV
Three-dimensional (3-D) velocity field reconstruction of oscillatory thermocapillary convections in a half-zone liquid bridge with a radius of O (1 mm) was carried out by applying 3-D particle tracking velocimetry (PTV). Simultaneous observation of the particles suspended in the bridge by two CCD cameras was carried out by placing a small cubic beam splitter above a transparent top rod. The reconstruction of the 3-D trajectories and the velocity fields of the particles in the several types of oscillatory-flow regimes were conducted successfully for sufficiently long period without losing particle tracking. With this application the present authors conducted a series of experiments focusing upon the collapse and re-formation process of the PAS by mechanically disturbing fully developed PAS.
Various flow patterns in thermocapillary convection in half-zone liquid bridge of high prandtl number fluid
Various flow patterns induced by a thermocapillary-driven convection in a half-zone liquid bridge of a high Prandtl number fluid (Pr = 0(10)) far beyond the critical condition were investigated experimentally. After the onset of oscillatory convection, one can observe several types of flow patterns with increasing a temperature difference between the both end surfaces of the bridge. The flow patterns were categorized through flow visualization, measurement of surface temperature variation and reconstruction of the pseudo-phase space.
Marangoni Experiment in Space (MEIS) has been conducted in the International Space Station (ISS) in order to clarify the transition processes of thermocapillary convection in liquid bridges. The use of microgravity allows us to generate long liquid bridges, 30mm in diameter and up to 60mm in length. Several flow visualization techniques have been applied to those large liquid bridges. 3-D PTV is used to reveal highly three-dimensional flow patterns that appear after the transition. Three CCD cameras are used to observe the motions of the tracer particles from different view angles through the transparent heated disk made of sapphire. Particle images are recorded in the HDD recording system in ISSand they are downloaded to the ground for data analysis. A conventional 3-D PTV technique and a newly-developed multi-frame particle tracking method are combined to obtain the results that can help better understanding of oscillatory 3-D flow fields in the liquid bridges. It is shown that the flow pattern changes from a 2-D axisymmetric steady flow to an oscillatory 3-D non-axisymmetric flow under the supercritical conditions.
The long-duration fluid physics experiments on a thermocapillary-driven flow have been carried out on the Japanese Experiment Module ‘Kibo’ aboard the International Space Station (ISS) since 2008. In these experiments, various aspects of thermocapillary convection in a half-zone (HZ) liquid bridge of high Prandtl number fluid have been examined under the advantages of the long-duration high-quality microgravity environment. In 2010, the authors succeeded to realize nonlinear convective fields in the HZ liquid bridge of rather high aspect ratio. Special attention was paid on to the complex convective fields, especially on the behaviors of the hydrothermal wave (HTW) over the free surface visualized by an infrared camera. In order to evaluate the characteristics of the nonlinear convective behaviors and their transition processes, the authors indicate the images taken by the infrared camera describing the time evolution of HTW, the spatio-temporal diagram, the Fourier analysis, and the pseudo-phase space, reconstructed from the time series of the scalar information of the liquid bridge, that is, surface temperature variation. In this paper, the authors introduce the signature of complex HTW behaviors observed at the long-duration on-orbit experiments, and make comparisons with some previous terrestrial and microgravity experiments.
Instability of thermocapillary convection in long liquid bridges of high Prandtl number fluids in microgravity
This paper reports experimental results on the instability of thermocapillary convection in long half-zone liquid bridges of high Prandtl number fluids (Pr=67, 112 and 207 for 5, 10 and 20 cSt silicone oils, respectively). The experiments were carried out in microgravity on the International Space Station, which allowed sufficiently long waiting period for the development of instability. Critical temperature differences were measured for liquid bridges of 30 and 50 mm diameters and up to 62.5 mm length. The resultant critical Marangoni numbers (Mac) were obtained for a wide range of aspect ratio (=height/diameter), AR, up to AR=2.0. Linear stability analyses for Pr=67 were also carried out to obtain numerical data for comparison. The present experimental results for Pr=67 indicate 5.0×103<Mac<2.0×104 for large AR (AR>1.25) and they are in good agreement with the present linear stability analysis result. In contrast, the present results are considerably smaller than the previous data (Pr=74) taken in the Space Shuttle experiments. It is shown that this difference is due to the effect of heating rate of the liquid bridge. The data for oscillation frequency and azimuthal mode number are also presented. The non-dimensional oscillation frequencies as well as Mac for Pr=67 have shown a sudden decrease at around AR=1.25, suggesting the bifurcation of neutral stability curves.