The Faraday threshold in small cylinders and the sidewall non-ideality

W. Batson, F. Zoueshtiagh, R. Narayanan

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37 Scopus citations


In this work we investigate, by way of experiments and theory, the Faraday instability threshold in cylinders at low frequencies. This implies large wavelengths where effects from mode discretization cannot be ignored. Careful selection of the working fluids has resulted in an immiscible interface whose apparent contact line with the sidewall can glide over a tiny film of the more wetting fluid, without detachment of its actual contact line. This unique behaviour has allowed for a system whose primary dissipation is defined by the bulk viscous effects, and in doing so, for the first time, close connection is seen with the viscous linear stability theory for which a stress-free condition is assumed at the sidewalls. As predicted, mode selection and co-dimension 2 points are observed in the experiment for a frequency range including subharmonic, harmonic, and superharmonic modes. While agreement with the predictions are generally excellent, there are deviations from the theory for certain modes and these are explained in the context of harmonic meniscus waves. A review of previous work on single-mode excitation in cylinders is given, along with comparison to the viscous model and analysis based upon the conclusions of the current experiments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)496-523
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Fluid Mechanics
StatePublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


  • Faraday waves
  • Instability


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