Experiments on the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability with an imposed, random initial perturbation

J. W. Jacobs, V. V. Krivets, V. Tsiklashvili, O. A. Likhachev

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50 Scopus citations


A vertical shock tube is used to perform experiments on the Richtmyer-Meshkov instability with a three-dimensional random initial perturbation. A membraneless flat interface is formed by opposed gas flows in which the light and heavy gases enter the shock tube from the top and from the bottom of the shock tube driven section. An air/SF6 gas combination is used and a Mach number M = 1.2 incident shock wave impulsively accelerates the interface. Initial perturbations on the interface are created by vertically oscillating the gas column within the shock tube to produce Faraday waves on the interface resulting in a short wavelength, three-dimensional perturbation. Planar Mie scattering is used to visualize the flow in which light from a laser sheet is scattered by smoke seeded in the air, and image sequences are captured using three high-speed video cameras. Measurements of the integral penetration depth prior to reshock show two growth behaviors, both having power law growth with growth exponents in the range found in previous experiments and simulations. Following reshock, all experiments show very consistent linear growth with a growth rate in good agreement with those found in previous studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-413
Number of pages7
JournalShock Waves
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Richtmyer-Meshkov instability
  • Self-similar
  • Turbulent

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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