Thermal instability with radiative transfer

C. Christophorides*, Stephen H. Davis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Linear stability theory is applied to determine the effects of radiative transfer in the thermal convection of a thin fluid layer bounded by rigid horizontal planes and heated from below. The critical values (for instability of the motionless fluid) of the Rayleigh number and wavenumber are computed for a gray, transparent medium including the effect of nonlinear initial temperature profiles. Limited results are given for the whole range of optical thickness showing that molecular heat conduction is negligible in the whole range except when the optical thickness approaches zero (a nonuniform limit). An estimate for the convective heat transport in a transparent medium is made using the "shape assumption" and compared with nonradiative convection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)222-226
Number of pages5
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1970

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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