This content will become publicly available on July 10, 2023
 Award ID(s):
 1706934
 Publication Date:
 NSFPAR ID:
 10326441
 Journal Name:
 Journal of Fluid Mechanics
 Volume:
 942
 ISSN:
 00221120
 Sponsoring Org:
 National Science Foundation
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We study the evolution of a 2D vortex layer at high Reynolds number. Vortex layer flows are characterized by intense vorticity concentrated around a curve. In addition to their intrinsic interest, vortex layers are relevant configurations because they are regularizations of vortex sheets. In this paper, we consider vortex layers whose thickness is proportional to the squareroot of the viscosity. We investigate the typical rollup process, showing that crucial phases in the initial flow evolution are the formation of stagnation points and recirculation regions. Stretching and folding characterizes the following stage of the dynamics, and we relate these events to the growth of the palinstrophy. The formation of an inner vorticity core, with vorticity intensity growing to infinity for larger Reynolds number, is the final phase of the dynamics. We display the inner core's selfsimilar structure, with the scale factor depending on the Reynolds number. We reveal the presence of complex singularities in the solutions of Navier–Stokes equations; these singularities approach the real axis with increasing Reynolds number. The comparison between these singularities and the Birkhoff–Rott singularity seems to suggest that vortex layers, in the limit $Re\rightarrow \infty$ , behave differently from vortex sheets.

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