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Experimental demonstration of a homogeneous two-scale dynamo

R. Stieglitz - U. Müller

Institute for Nuclear and Energy Technologies (IKET),Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe Postbox 3640, D-76021 Karlsruhe, Germany

It has been shown theoretically in the past that homogeneous dynamos may occur for various velocity fields. G.O. Roberts investigated spatially periodic velocity fields, which Busse confined to a finite cylindrical domain. Using a mean field approach he derived an approximate condition for the onset of dynamo action. Based on Busse's idea at the Forschungszentrum Karlsruhe a conceptual design for an experimental homogeneous dynamo was developed, and a test facility was set up. The first experiments demonstrated that a permanent dynamo can exist in a cylindrical container filled with liquid sodium in which by means of guide vanes counter rotating and counter current spiral vortices are arranged. The dynamo is self-exciting at sufficiently high flow rates, and the magnetic field saturates at a mean value. The instantaneous magnetic field fluctuates around this mean value by about 5%. As predicted by theory the mode of the observed magnetic field is strongly non-axisymmetric. In a series of experiments a phase and a bifurcation diagramm for dynamo action was derived which depend on the spiral and axial flow rates. Figs 5, Refs 14.

Magnetohydrodynamics 38, No. 1/2, 27-33, 2002 [PDF, 0.29 Mb]

Copyright: Institute of Physics, University of Latvia
Electronic edition ISSN 1574-0579
Printed edition ISSN 0024-998X