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Experimental study of a liquid metal film flow in a streamwise magnetic field

Ph. P. Vieweg , Yu. Kolesnikov , Ch. Karcher

Institute of Thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics, Technische Universität Ilmenau, Am Helmholtzring 1, 98693 Ilmenau, Germany

Continuous wetting of a surface with liquid metal is indispensable in many applications, such as in fusion reactors. In the present study, we provide data on the suppression of free-surface instabilities of liquid metal film flows under the action of strong streamwise magnetic fields in analogy to the poloidal fields used in application. We have designed and built up an experimental test setup which allows studying the influence of magnetohydrodynamics on the dynamic behaviour of liquid metal GaInSn film flows in laminar, transient, and turbulent regimes. While the width and the length of the film are adjusted at w = 23 mm and l = 120 mm, respectively, we are able to apply strong uniform magnetic fields up to B = 5 T over the entire fluid-flow volume. Moreover, the setup allows to vary the Reynolds number within the range 200 ≤ Re ≤ 1700. The corresponding Hartmann and Stuart numbers are Ha ≤ 180 and N ≤ 40, respectively. This study shows that a streamwise magnetic field is capable of suppressing free-surface instabilities even in the turbulent regime of the film flow by dampening any motion perpendicular to the applied magnetic field. Plans for future studies include the quantitative investigation of the parameter space. Figs 4, Refs 8.

Key words: Liquid metal, film flow, instabilities, experiment, streamwise magnetic field.

Magnetohydrodynamics 58, No. 1/2, 5-12, 2022 [PDF, 1.75 Mb]

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