Instabilities in gravity driven flow of thin fluid films

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This paper presents theoretical, computational, and experimental aspects of the instability development in the flow of thin fluid films. The theoretical part involves basic fluid mechanics and presents derivation of the thin film equation using lubrication approximation. A simplified version of this equation is then analyzed analytically using linear stability analysis, and also numerically. The results are then compared directly to experiments. The experimental part outlines the setup, as well as data acquisition and analysis. This immediate comparison to experiments is very useful for gaining better insight into the interpretation of various theoretical and computational results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-115
Number of pages21
JournalSIAM Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Applied Mathematics


  • Finite difference methods
  • Fluid dynamics
  • Nonlinear partial differential equations
  • Perturbation theory


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