Spiral-pattern formation in Rayleigh-Bénard convection

Hao Wen Xi, J. D. Gunton, Jorge Viñals

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


We present a numerical study of the spontaneous formation of spiral patterns in Rayleigh-Bénard convection in non-Boussinesq fluids. We solve a generalized two-dimensional Swift-Hohenberg equation that includes a quadratic nonlinearity and coupling to mean flow. We show that this model predicts in quantitative detail many of the features observed experimentally in studies of Rayleigh-Bénard convection in CO2 gas. In particular, we study the appearance and stability of a rotating spiral state obtained during the transition from an ordered hexagonal state to a roll state.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R2987-R2990
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1993


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