The nature of inviscid vortex breakdown

Michael Goldshtik, Fazle Hussain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


We show that vortex breakdown appears as a jump bifurcation due to structural instability of swirling flows when their solution locally fails to exist and the flow transits to another stable or metastable state. The flow pattern inside the steady separation zone and, consequently, the vortex breakdown features depend on the flow history. Therefore, we take into account the flow pattern inside the separation zone. The stagnation zone model (without velocity jump) excels the traditional analytic continuation method (leading to a recirculation zone) in that solutions always exist, and, for large enough inflow swirl, exhibit nonuniqueness and folds due to smooth variations of flow parameters, thus predicting the experimentally observed hysteretic jump transitions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-265
Number of pages3
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1997


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