Thermal Boundary Layer Dynamics at Large Rayleigh Number: Implications for the Number of Plumes in Planetary Mantles
Abstract
The dynamics of a thermal boundary layer at high Rayleigh number (Ra) is examined on the basis of 3D experiments in a volumetrically heated fluid cooled from above. The behavior of a thermal boundary layer, independent of any effects of interaction with other boundary layers, is studied. The average number of plumes present in the experiments increases approximately as Ra exp 1/4. Since the boundary layer thickness, delta, varies as Ra exp 1/4, the average spacing between plumes varies as sq rt delta.
 Publication:

Lunar and Planetary Science Conference
 Pub Date:
 March 1997
 Bibcode:
 1997LPI....28.1079P
 Keywords:

 Planetary Mantles;
 Plumes;
 Rayleigh Number;
 Thermal Boundary Layer;
 Volcanoes;
 Boundary Layer Stability;
 Planetary Surfaces;
 Venus Surface;
 Earth Surface;
 Lunar and Planetary Exploration;
 BOUNDARY LAYERS;
 MANTLE: DYNAMICS;
 PLUMES;
 SWELLS