Skeletons of patterned vortex cores

Hamid Ait Abderrahmane, Giuseppe Di Labbio, Mira Kim, Mohamed Fayed, Hoi Dick Ng, Georgios H. Vatistas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract: The process of freely attenuating and intensifying coherent structures in the form of satellite vortices, within a quasi two-dimensional rotating shallow layer of water confined to a circular tank, is visualized using the finite-time Lyapunov exponent technique. The visualizations show that the intensification, given by the transition from a system of two to three satellite vortices, and the attenuation, given by the reverse transition, each involve the two-step process of destruction and re-emergence of satellite vortices. In the intensification process, the two satellite vortices first collapse into the central region of the main vortex before re-emerging as three satellite vortices through the roll-up of material lines at the main vortex boundary. Conversely, in the attenuation process, the three satellite vortices first shed their structure into the region outside the main vortex boundary before re-emerging as two satellite vortices from material lines drawn from the walls of the container. Graphic abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)857-865
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Visualization
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2019


  • Mesovortices
  • Rotating flow
  • Satellite vortices
  • Transition


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