Theoretical and Computational Fluid Dynamics

, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 59–76 | Cite as

Ligament formation in sheared liquid–gas layers

  • Thomas Boeck
  • Jie Li
  • Enrique López-Pagés
  • Philip Yecko
  • Stéphane ZaleskiEmail author
Original Article


We perform numerical simulations of two-phase liquid–gas sheared layers, with the objective of studying atomization. The Navier–Stokes equations for two-dimensional incompressible flow are solved in a periodic domain. A volume-of-fluid method is used to track the interface. The density ratio is kept around 10. The calculations show good agreement with a fully viscous Orr–Sommerfeld linear theory over several orders of magnitude of interface growth. The nonlinear development shows the growth of finger-like structures, or ligaments, and the detachment of droplets. The effect of the Weber and Reynolds numbers, the boundary layer width and the initial perturbation amplitude are discussed through a number of typical cases. Inversion of the liquid boundary layer is shown to yield more readily ligaments bending upwards and is thus more likely to produce droplets.


Kelvin-Helmholtz instability Two-fluid mixing layer Atomization Multiphase shear flow Ligaments Droplet formation Ligament breakup Volume of fluid 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas Boeck
    • 1
  • Jie Li
    • 2
  • Enrique López-Pagés
    • 3
  • Philip Yecko
    • 4
  • Stéphane Zaleski
    • 5
    Email author
  1. 1.Fachgebiet Thermo- und FluiddynamikTU IlmenauIlmenauGermany
  2. 2.Department of EngineeringUniversity of CambridgeCambridgeUK
  3. 3.Fluid Mechanics DepartmentUniversidad de ZaragozaZaragozaSpain
  4. 4.Department of Mathematical SciencesMontclair State UniversityMontclairUSA
  5. 5.Laboratoire de Modélisation en MécaniqueCNRS and Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Paris VI)ParisFrance

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